GAINESVILLE -- A tip of the hat goes to Florida Gators baseball coach Kevin O'Sullivan, who has done a masterful job managing his team to a pair of victories in the Gainesville Regional of the NCAA baseball tournament.
UF defeated the University of Miami 8-2 on Saturday night to advance to the regional tournament's championship game. Florida plays either Miami or Jacksonville University at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday. A win tonight will send UF to its first Super Regional since 2005.
O'Sullivan made all the right calls on Saturday against the 'Canes. Saving ace Stephen Locke for the Miami worked out brilliantly. Locke pitched 7 and 1/3 innings on Saturday, allowing just two runs (both of which were unearned). O'Sullivan brought in freshman pitcher Nick Maronde (normally a starter) to close out the seventh. Maronde recorded a pair of strikeouts to get UF out of a jam. Offensively, the Gators pressured Miami's defense into several mistakes with six bunts.
UF is the favorite to win tonight's game after winning its first contests of the regional tournament. The Gators have avoided the losers' bracket, which is murder on a team's pitching depth.