Baseball: Florida Series Begins Tonight

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Baseball: Florida Series Begins Tonight

Tony Locey
Tony Locey

Ninth-ranked Georgia plays host to Florida at Foley Field starting Friday at 7 p.m. with the entire SEC series sold out.

Students who present a valid UGA ID will still be admitted free via the 3rd base gate. Student admissions are first come, first serve until their held block has been exhausted. Game two of the series will be at 2 p.m. although fans are encouraged to arrive early as the Bulldogs hold their annual Lettermen’s Day. The first two games of the series will be available on SEC Network+. Sunday’s game will begin at 12:30 p.m. and be televised on ESPN2. The entire Florida series will be broadcast on the Georgia Bulldog Sports Network.

Georgia (34-12, 13-8 SEC) snapped its first four-game losing streak of the year on Tuesday when it blanked The Citadel 9-0 at SRP Park in N. Augusta, S.C. Four pitchers combined on a one-hitter, and it was the fourth one-hitter of the year for the Bulldogs. Georgia also one-hit #5 Vanderbilt, #10 LSU and Presbyterian. The Bulldogs lead the nation in Fewest Hits Allowed Per Nine Innings at 6.13 and are ninth nationally in ERA at 3.19. Georgia’s record for lowest ERA in a season is 2.97 by the 1958 club and the next best is 3.26 by the 1967 squad. Opponents are hitting only .194 against the Bulldogs this year.

Tim Elliott
Tim Elliott

Florida (28-18, 9-12 SEC) did not have any midweek games due to exams. Georgia is 22-3 at home this year while the Gators are 3-9 on the road. In the all-time series, UF leads 187-93-2 over Georgia. The Bulldogs last won a series over the Gators in 2013 in Athens. Before this year, the last time Georgia was ranked higher than Florida coming into a series was 2009. Florida is batting .296 with 55 home runs and a .465 slugging percentage while the pitching has a 5.24 ERA. The Gators are fielding .972.

Georgia is batting .263 with a .410 slugging percentage. Senior 2B LJ Talley continues to lead the offense with a .333 average, eight home runs and a team-high 35 RBI. Junior CF Tucker Maxwell leads the club with nine home runs and ranks third in the SEC in stolen bases with a team best 19. In SEC action, junior Aaron Schunk is batting a team-high .355 (8th in SEC) along with a 1-1 mark, 3.60 ERA and four saves.

Georgia entered last weekend’s series versus ninth-ranked Miss. State with the league’s best ERA but then with sophomore ace and SEC ERA leader Emerson Hancock (7-2, 1.04 ERA) along with 3B/closer Aaron Schunk (1-1, 2.14 ERA, 11 Saves; .339-7-31) unavailable coupled with MSU’s SEC-leading offense, the Bulldogs surrendered 34 runs on 39 hits in dropping all three contests. Schunk saw his consecutive games started streak end at 140 when he missed the final two games of the MSU series due to a sore heel/Achilles. With Schunk out, the Bulldogs have employed Riley King(.294-5-36) or Cole Tate (.167-0-3) at third base. King has made starts in left field and right field too. Hancock will miss the UF series while Schunk is listed as day-to-day.

The Bulldogs are on pace to set a school record for Fielding Percentage for the second year in a row. Currently, Georgia is fielding .980 (12th in NCAA). Last year, the Bulldogs established the fielding mark at .979. In SEC action, Georgia is fielding .987 with only 10 errors in 21 games. In the series sweep of No. 21 Missouri, the Bulldogs turned their first Triple Play since 1963!

Scott Stricklin
Scott Stricklin

GEORGIA vs. FLORIDA MATCHUPS

Friday: Junior RHP Tony Locey (7-1, 2.60 ERA) vs. Sophomore RHP Tommy Mace (7-3, 4.48 ERA)

Saturday: Junior RHP Tim Elliott (5-3, 2.63 ERA) vs. Sophomore RHP Jack Leftwich (4-4, 6.03 ERA)

Sunday: TBA Vs. TBA

Television/Radio

Friday SECN+ Streaming Link with 1st pitch at 7:02 pm: http://www.gado.gs/2j4

Saturday SECN+ Streaming Link with 1st pitch at 2:02 pm: http://www.gado.gs/2j6

Sunday: ESPN2, 1st pitch at 12:32 pm Link: http://www.gado.gs/2j2

Radio (Entire series): Georgia Bulldog Sports Network from IMG College (David Johnston & Jeff Dantzler)

Stations: 960 AM-WRFC and selected affiliates (check your local listings), also via the Georgia Bulldogs app and TuneIn app.

Additional Coverage on Twitter: @BaseballUGA

Tickets:

-StubHub: gado.gs/bsb0405t

-Foley Field – Gates/Ticket Booth open 2 hours before first pitch.

-UGA Student Tickets: Free Admission with valid UGA Student ID Card

-UGA Student Gate is located off Rutherford Street

Promotions

Saturday: First 750 fans receive a white replica Georgia jersey

Sunday: Pregame: Anthem Buddies (Kids can stand next to their favorite player for the National Anthem); Postgame: Kids Play Catch in the Outfield and Post-game Autographs With the Bulldogs

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Greg is closing in on 11 years writing about and photographing UGA sports. While often wrong and/or out of focus, it has been a long, strange trip full of fun and new friends.