Terps Drop Series Finale to No. 21 Florida, 8-5

Maryland Athletics
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. Despite totaling double-digit hits for the second consecutive game, the Maryland baseball team could not overcome inconsistent pitching and defensive miscues as the Terps fell to No. 21 Florida, 8-5, in eight innings Sunday in the series finale at McKethan Stadium.

Due to the Terps travel schedule, no new inning was to begin after 3:15 p.m.

After recording 13 hits in a 9-7 win on Saturday, the Terps (1-2) tallied 12 on Sunday with five different players totaling two hits apiece. Kevin Martir finished 2-for-5 with two RBI and a run scored, while Blake Schmit also went 2-for-5 with a RBI and a run.

For the second straight day, the Terps’ bats got it going early. Charlie White led off the inning with a walk and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt. With two outs, Martir, who went 5-for-13 with four RBI in the series, singled to left scoring White. Schmit followed and doubled to the gap in left center to score Martir all the way from first.

With two runs already across in the inning, Mike Rescigno registered his first career hit when he bounced the ball of the warning track in right field for a ground rule double to score Schmit to send the Terps into the bottom of the inning with a 3-0 lead.

The Gators (2-1) responded with one run in the first and four runs in the home half of the second. Florida benefited from two walks in the first to manufacture its run on a sacrifice fly to right. In the second inning, the Gators loaded the bases with two walks and single. After two runs had already scored, Taylor Gushue delivered the big blow with a two-RBI single through the left side against Jake Drossner, who took over for starter Jared Price.

Righty Bobby Ruse entered in the bottom of the third and provided 2-2/3 innings of solid relief. But the Gators tacked on three more runs, two earned, in the bottom of the fifth. With a runner at first, Florida put the hit-and-run on and A.J. Puk drove the ball into right field to score a run. Two batters later, Richie Martin doubled down the left-field line for a RBI and the Gators added a third run on an error.

The Terps pushed one across in the top of the sixth. Andrew Amaro scored on a Brandon Lowe groundout to second after leading off the inning with a double. Jaime Pashuck entered in the seventh and pitched two scoreless innings to give the Terps a chance to rally.

In the eighth with two outs, the Terps showed some life. Lowe doubled down the left field line capping a strong weekend for the redshirt freshman, who finished 4-for-11 with four runs, three RBI and a home run in the series. LaMonte Wade followed with a single to left. With runners at the corners, Martir reached on an infield single scoring Lowe.

The Gators made a pitching change and turned to Ryan Harris to end the rally. The righty did just that getting Schmit to ground out.

Eric Hanhold earned the win in relief for the Gators. Price took the loss for the Terps. Harris picked up the save.

Maryland will open its home schedule on Tuesday when Rider visits Bob “Turtle” Smith Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m.