The University of Central Florida Baseball team made program history Wednesday night against the then No. 2 University of Florida.
The Knights began the scoring drive early on in the first inning, bringing the score to 2-0, UCF. The runs would continue, unanswered, for five scores and five innings.
Sophomore Kyle Marsh led the Knights with two doubles and a home run.
“Kyle Marsh had a phenomenal day,” said UCF head coach Greg Lovelady. “Joe Sheridan – a freshman – to come out in this environment against the No. 2 team in the country and pitch the way he did? I can’t say enough about him.”
Freshman Joe Sheridan debuted with only one run and four hits on the mound.
“He has done it all Fall and all Winter. It’s why we put him in the game,” Lovelady said.
After UCF’s two runs in the first inning, in due part to Marsh, momentum picked up in the third inning and the sightline of a win for the Gators began to slip away.
With two men on base, Marsh would send a ball flying to left field for a two-run home run. Rylan Thomas picked up where Marsh left off and RBI doubled to give the Knights a lead of 5-0.
The Gators slid in a run between frames after a UCF let one go from third base for a score. At the bottom of the inning, UCF’s Ryan Crile hit his second home run of the season to close the frame.
A three-run double followed in the sixth again from Marsh after loading the bases. Hamblin, Putnam, and Kam Gellinger pushed the Knights ahead 9-1.
The remainder of the night went 2-1 in favor of the Knights – a welcome victory after a close 3-4 loss to UF in Gainesville the night prior.
“We knew we needed to come out with a little more confidence and understand that we had the ability to win this game and we did exactly that,” said Lovelady post-game.
“I am really, really proud. It was the best offensive night that we’ve had in terms of taking good swings. When they made mistakes, we hammered it. We played like we belonged today and showed a lot of people what kind of team we could possibly be. We set the standard for the team for the rest of the year.”
UCF will play at home for the next ten games, with Stony Brook up to bat over the next three.
The Knights will then welcome Florida State University at home for two games on March 7 at 6:30 p.m. and March 8 at 4 p.m.