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Six HRs send Gators to Super Regional

Written by gatorcody, June 6, 2010, 0 Comments,
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Tyler Thompson came into Sunday’s championship game of the NCAA Gainesville Regional with two home runs to show for his season. By the fifth inning he had doubled his total and for good measure, he decided to go deep one more time.

Thompson’s three home runs were part of a season-high six home run onslaught that the Florida Gators to a 15-0 victory over Florida Atlantic, giving Florida its largest victory of the season and the home field for next weekend’s Super Regional against the winner of the Miami Regional (Texas and Texas A&M play Monday night for the championship).

“Tonight was a great team effort,” Florida head coach Kevin O’Sullivan said after Florida’s amazing power display. “We got a chance to get everybody in the ball game. We swung the bats well and got an early lead and got production from the whole lineup.”

Thompson’s three homers and six RBI highlighted a 19-hit attack for the Gators (45-15). Thompson got things going with an RBI double that got the scoring going for the Gators in a three-run second inning. It was a taste of things to come for the sophomore left fielder.

Thompson’s first home run came in the third when the Gators strung together three solo homers to stretch their lead to 6-0. Starting pitcher Brian Johnson led off by curving the first pitch of the inning inside the right field foul pole for a home run. He rounded third base, pointing at the Florida dugout towards relief pitcher Chas Spottswood, who Johnson told before the at-bat that he would hit a home run.

Mike Zunino followed with a towering home run to center field that cleared the 400-foot fence, for the first back-to-back home runs the Gators have hit since April 21 at USF.

After a fly out by Josh Adams, it was Thompson’s chance to cap off the inning with the first of his three homers. He launched a solo home run over the right field scoreboard. When he rounded third base, he looked up to see all the Florida players remaining in the dugout, looking disinterested and unimpressed.

When Thompson ran into the dugout without any praise from a teammate, he took a seat on the bench when the team mobbed him.

“I saw it coming around third that they were doing that,” Thompson said of the silent treatment, while shaking his head with a smile.

Thompson’s fifth-inning home run provided the only run the Gators scored between the third and eighth innings. He went with an outside pitch and drove it over the 365-foot sign on the left-center field fence. The swing secured his first career multi-home run game. But he still wasn’t done.

“I’ve hit two in a game before but never three,” Thompson said.

That is no longer the case.

His two-out home run in the eighth inning was the record setter. FAU brought in left-handed specialist Jason Boyer to face Thompson, but they could have saved the arm in the bullpen. Thompson drove an inside fastball into the right-center bullpen for a three-run home run, making him the first player in Florida history with three home runs in a postseason game.

“No way,” Thompson said with a laugh about what he was thinking after the third home run. “I was just trying to put the ball in play with two strikes. Against a lefty, I’ve been struggling with the bat. I was just trying to put the bat on it.”

Thompson’s teammates wouldn’t let him get all of the home run glory. Earlier in the eighth inning, Preston Tucker made his presence known.

After Nolan Fontana doubled and Matt den Dekker singled to start the inning, Tucker hit a sky-scraping home run just over the glove of jumping right fielder Andy Mee, pushing the Florida lead to 10-0 before Thompson extended it to 13-0 five batters later.

“There was a stretch of games where we were swinging the bats as well as anyone in the league,” Tucker said. “Fortunately, we were swinging the bats well this week.”

The run support for Johnson was a luxury he really didn’t need. The freshman lefty was on his game as the Florida pitching staff recorded its third shutout of the season behind a seven-inning, five-hit stint by Johnson. He didn’t walk a batter and only two base runners made it as far as second base.

“I was just getting ahead in the count,” Johnson said. “I just worked ahead and made them swing at my pitches.”

After his home run, Johnson added two singles in his next two at-bats. All that without even taking batting practice before the game.

Johnson went 5-8 with a triple and a home run over the weekend. His performance at the plate and on the mound earned him honors as the Most Outstanding Player of the Gainesville Regional.

“He had a great weekend,” O’Sullivan said. “I think his breaking ball was really sharp tonight and the changeup was going a little more. When you see him run the bases, the one thing that goes through your mind is you don’t want him to pull a hamstring.”

The freshman left-hander struck out only four batters, but his pinpoint control had FAU hitters uneasy all night. Whenever Johnson had two strikes, he was able to bust the Owls’ hitters inside and catch them off guard, resulting in a strikeout or a weakly hit ground ball.

“That guy is special,” FAU coach John McCormack said of Johnson. “He was able to throw a fastball for strike wherever he wanted. Then, second time through the order, he was about 80 percent with his breaking ball for a strike. Then, he’ll flip in a changeup for good measure.

“He had enough fastball that just kept beating our bats. We were a hair short of getting on it. But no one seemed to get on it this year, really. I don’t know him, but he seems to be a fierce competitor. He got the ball and went right back on the mound. He wanted the ball.”

O’Sullivan’s goal was to get a few relief pitchers into the game for some work before next weekend’s Super Regionals, but Johnson’s sparkling performance was too good for him to be removed. He threw 97 pitches on the night, 70 for strikes.

Tommy Toledo and Kevin Chapman threw the final two innings, recording a total of three strikeouts.

“This time of year is about wins,” O’Sullivan said. “You can overanalyze or over manage it, but we’re just trying to get two more wins to get to Omaha. We do have some work to do this week. We’ve got pitchers who need to get some work in intersquad.”

In 27 innings this weekend, the Florida pitching staff allowed five runs, 27 hits, two walks and struck out 30.

The Gators also didn’t make an error on the weekend. The bats having a breakout game was all that was missing, and now Florida goes into next weekend playing with confidence in all facets of the game.

“If you plan on advancing to the World Series and having a chance to play on the last day of the year you’ve got to play hit, pitch and play defense,” O’Sullivan said. “That’s the most encouraging thing going into next weekend, that we’re doing all three phases as well as we have done them all year long.

“We’ve got our sights on playing for a while into the summer.”

The next step to making that happen comes next weekend. The Gators will get the winner of the Coral Gables Regional, and their championship game is Monday night at 7 p.m. on ESPNU between Miami and Texas A&M. The Florida team will practice for about an hour Monday to allow some unused pitchers to get work, and then the team will be together to watch the Miami-Texas A&M game at night.

Florida will make their fourth appearance in a Super Regional over the past seven years.

All-Regional Team:

Catcher: Mike Zunino, Florida; First Base: Preston Tucker, Florida; Second Base:  Raymond Church, Florida Atlantic; Shortstop: Nolan Fontana, Florida; Third Base: Sean Bukovich, Florida Atlantic; Outfield: Tyler Thompson, Florida; Adalberto Santos, Oregon State and Matt den Dekker, Florida; Designated Hitter: Eddie Cassidy, Florida Atlantic; Pitchers: Hudson Randall, Florida, and Brian Johnson, Florida

Most Outstanding Player: Brian Johnson, Florida

NCAA DIVISION I BASEBALL CHAMPIONSHIP

REGIONALS
/ Friday-Monday, June 4-7 / Double-elimination

(3) FLORIDA / GAINESVILLE REGIONAL

McKethan Stadium / Host: University of Florida

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) Oregon State 6, (2) Florida Atlantic 4

Game 2: (1) Florida 7, (4) Bethune-Cookman 3

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) Florida Atlantic 12, (4) Bethune-Cookman 6; Bethune Cookman (35-22) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Florida 10, (3) Oregon State 2

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Florida Atlantic 11, (3) Oregon State 7; Oregon State (32-24) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Florida 15, (2) Florida Atlantic 0; Florida (45-15) hosts Super Regional versus Coral Gables Regional winner (either Texas A&M or Miami, Fla.); Florida Atlantic (37-24) eliminated

MIAMI, FLA. / CORAL GABLES REGIONAL

Alex Rodriguez Park
/ Host: University of Miami

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (2) Texas A&M 17, (3) Florida International 3

Game 2: (1) Miami, Fla. 12, (4) Dartmouth 8

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (4) Dartmouth 15, (3) Florida International 9; Florida International (36-25) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Miami, Fla. 14, (2) Texas A&M 1

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Texas A&M 4, (4) Dartmouth 3; Dartmouth (27-19) eliminated

Game 6: (2) Texas A&M 11, (1) Miami, Fla. 7; First loss for Miami

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (2) Texas A&M (43-20-1) vs. (1) Miami, Fla. (42-18), 7 p.m.

CAL STATE FULLERTON / FULLERTON REGIONAL

Goodwin Field
/ Host: California State University at Fullerton

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) New Mexico 9, (2) Stanford 5

Game 2: (4) Minnesota 3, (1) Cal State Fullerton 1

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (1) Cal State Fullerton 6, (2) Stanford 5; Stanford (31-25) eliminated

Game 4: (4) Minnesota 6, (3) New Mexico 4 (10 innings)

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (1) Cal State Fullerton 11, (3) New Mexico 3; New Mexico (38-23) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Cal State Fullerton 7, (4) Minnesota 2; First loss for Minnesota

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (1) Cal State Fullerton (44-16) vs. (4) Minnesota (32-29), 11 p.m.

(6) UCLA / LOS ANGELES REGIONAL

Jackie Robinson Stadium
/ Host: University of California, Los Angeles

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (2) Louisiana State 11, (3) UC Irvine 10 (11 innings)

Game 2: (1) UCLA 15, (4) Kent State 1

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (3) UC Irvine 19, (4) Kent State 9; Kent State (39-25) eliminated

Game 4: (1) UCLA 6, (2) Louisiana State 3

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (3) UC Irvine 4, (2) Louisiana State 3; Louisiana State (41-22) eliminated

Game 6: (1) UCLA 6, (3) UC Irvine 2; UCLA (46-13) advances to Super Regional; UC Irvine (39-21) eliminated

(7) LOUISVILLE / LOUISVILLE REGIONAL

Jim Patterson Stadium
/ Host: University of Louisville

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (2) Vanderbilt 8, (3) Illinois State 7 (13 innings)

Game 2: (1) Louisville 11, (4) St. Louis 2

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (3) Illinois State 8, (4) St. Louis 3; St. Louis (33-29) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Louisville 7, (2) Vanderbilt 1

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Vanderbilt 10, (3) Illinois State 4; Illinois State (32-24) eliminated

Game 6: (2) Vanderbilt 7, (1) Louisville 0; First loss for Louisville

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (2) Vanderbilt (44-18) vs. (1) Louisville (50-13), 6 p.m.

CONNECTICUT / NORWICH REGIONAL

Sen. Thomas J. Todd Memorial Stadium
/ Host: University of Connecticut

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (1) Florida State 11, (4) Central Connecticut State 3

Game 2: (3) Oregon 5, (2) Connecticut 3

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) Connecticut 25, (4) Central Connecticut State 5; Central Connecticut State (33-23) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Florida State 6, (3) Oregon 4

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (3) Oregon 4, (2) Connecticut 3; Connecticut (48-16) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Florida State 5, (3) Oregon 3; Florida State (45-17) advances to Super Regional; Oregon (40-24) is eliminated

TEXAS CHRISTIAN / FORT WORTH REGIONAL

Lupton Stadium
/ Host: Texas Christian University

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) Arizona 10, (2) Baylor 9

Game 2: (1) Texas Christian 16, (4) Lamar 3

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) Baylor 6, (4) Lamar 4; Lamar (35-26) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Texas Christian 11, (3) Arizona 5

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Baylor 4, (3) Arizona 2; Arizona (34-23) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Texas Christian 9, (2) Baylor 0; Texas Christian (49-11) advances to Super Regional; Baylor (36-25) eliminated

(2) TEXAS / AUSTIN REGIONAL

UFCU Disch-Falk Field
/ Host: University of Texas

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) Louisiana-Lafayette 1, (2) Rice 0

Game 2: (1) Texas 11, (4) Rider 0

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) Rice 19, (4) Rider 1; Rider (36-23) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Texas 4, (3) Louisiana-Lafayette 2

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Rice 9, (3) Louisiana-Lafayette 1; Louisiana-Lafayette (38-22) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Texas 4, (2) Rice 1; Texas (49-11) advances to Super Regional; Rice (40-23) eliminated

(4) COASTAL CAROLINA / MYRTLE BEACH REGIONAL

BB&T Coastal Field
/ Host: Coastal Carolina University

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (1) Coastal Carolina 6, (4) Stony Brook 0

Game 2: (2) College of Charleston 9, (3) North Carolina State 6

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (4) Stony Brook 6, (3) North Carolina State 2; North Carolina State (38-24) eliminated

Game 4: (2) College of Charleston 16, (1) Coastal Carolina 6

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (1) Coastal Carolina 25, (4) Stony Brook 7; Stony Brook (30-27) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Coastal Carolina 8, (2) College of Charleston 7; First loss for College of Charleston

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (1) Coastal Carolina (54-8) vs. (2) College of Charleston (44-18), 7 p.m.

SOUTH CAROLINA / COLUMBIA REGIONAL

Carolina Stadium
/ Host: University of South Carolina

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) The Citadel 7, (2) Virginia Tech 2

Game 2: (1) South Carolina 9, (4) Bucknell 5

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) Virginia Tech 16, (4) Bucknell 7; Bucknell (25-35) eliminated

Game 4: (1) South Carolina 9, (3) The Citadel 4

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (4) Virginia Tech 4, (3) The Citadel 3; The Citadel (43-22) eliminated

Game 6: (1) South Carolina 10, (2) Virginia Tech 2; South Carolina (46-15) advances to Super Regional; Virginia Tech (40-22) eliminated

OKLAHOMA / NORMAN REGIONAL

L. Dale Mitchell Park
/ Host: Oklahoma University

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (1) Oklahoma 7, (4) Oral Roberts 6 (10 innings)

Game 2: (3) North Carolina 12, (2) California 3

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (4) Oral Roberts 9, (2) California 8; California (29-25) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Oklahoma 7, (3) North Carolina 6 (10 innings)

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (3) North Carolina 12, (4) Oral Roberts 4; Oral Roberts (36-26) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Oklahoma 3, (3) North Carolina 2; Oklahoma (47-15) advances to Super Regional; North Carolina (38-22) eliminated

(5) VIRGINIA / CHARLOTTESVILLE REGIONAL

Davenport Field
/ Host: University of Virginia

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (1) Virginia 15, (4) Virginia Commonwealth 4

Game 2: (2) Mississippi 10, (3) St. John’s 5

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (3) St. John’s 8, (4) Virginia Commonwealth 6; Virginia Commonwealth (34-26-1) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Virginia 13, (2) Mississippi 7

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (3) St. John’s 20, (2) Mississippi 16; Mississippi (39-24) eliminated

Game 6: (2) St. John’s 6, (1) Virginia 5; First loss for Virginia

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (2) St. John’s (43-19) vs. (1) Virginia (49-12), 6 p.m.

(8) GEORGIA TECH / ATLANTA RGIONAL

Russ Chandler Stadium
/ Host: Georgia Institute of Technology

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (2) Alabama 11, (3) Elon 2

Game 2: (1) Georgia Tech 10, (4) Mercer 0

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (4) Mercer 13, (3) Elon 7; Elon (38-24) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Georgia Tech 5, (2) Alabama 2

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Alabama 5, (4) Mercer 3; Mercer (38-24) eliminated

Game 6: (2) Alabama 8, (1) Georgia Tech 1; First loss for Georgia Tech

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (2) Alabama (40-23) vs. (1) Georgia Tech (47-14), 8 p.m.

AUBURN / AUBURN REGIONAL

Plainsman Park
/ Host: Auburn University

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (2) Clemson 10, (3) Southern Mississippi 1

Game 2: (1) Auburn 9, (4) Jacksonville State 7

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (3) Southern Mississippi 19, (4) Jacksonville State 6; Jacksonville State (32-26) eliminated

Game 4: (2) Clemson 5, (1) Auburn 2

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (1) Auburn 17, (3) Southern Mississippi 8; Southern Mississippi (36-24) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Auburn 11, (2) Clemson 10; First loss for Clemson

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (1) Auburn (42-30) vs. (2) Clemson (40-22), 7 p.m.

ARKANSAS / FAYETTEVILLE REGIONAL

Baum Stadium
/ Host: University of Arkansas

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (1) Arkansas 19, (4) Grambling State 7

Game 2: (2) Washington State 8, (3) Kansas State 6

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (3) Kansas State 9, (4) Grambling State 8; Grambling State (22-32) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Arkansas 6, (2) Washington State 4

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Washington State 9, (3) Kansas State 6; Kansas State (37-22) eliminated

Game 6: (2) Washington State 10, (1) Arkansas 7; First loss for Arkansas

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (2) Washington State (37-21) vs. (1) Arkansas (42-19), 8 p.m.

(1) ARIZONA STATE / TEMPE REGIONAL

Winkles Field-Packard Stadium at Brock Ballpark
/ Host: Arizona State University

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) Hawaii 4, (2) San Diego 3

Game 2: (1) Arizona State 6, (4) Milwaukee 2

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) San Diego 22, (4) Milwaukee 1; Milwaukee (33-26) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Arizona State 12, (3) Hawaii 1

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (3) Hawaii 12, (2) San Diego 9; San Diego (37-22) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Arizona State 8, (3) Hawaii 4; Arizona State (50-8) advances to Super Regional; Hawaii (35-28) eliminated

SUPER REGIONALS / Friday-Sunday, June 11-13, 2001 / Best-of-3 series

Fayetteville Regional winner vs. (1) Arizona State (50-8)

Auburn Regional winner at Atlanta Regional winner

Oklahoma (47-15) vs. Charlottesville Regional winner

South Carolina (46-15) vs. Myrtle Beach Regional winner

Texas Christian (49-11) at (2) Texas (49-11)

Florida State (45-17) vs. Louisville Regional winner

Fullerton Regional winner vs. (6) UCLA (46-13)

Coral Gables Regional winner vs. (3) Florida (45-15)

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Tyler Thompson came into Sunday’s championship game of the NCAA Gainesville Regional with two home runs to show for his season. By the fifth inning he had doubled his total and for good measure, he decided to go deep one more time.

Thompson’s three home runs were part of a season-high six home run onslaught that the Florida Gators to a 15-0 victory over Florida Atlantic, giving Florida its largest victory of the season and the home field for next weekend’s Super Regional against the winner of the Miami Regional (Texas and Texas A&M play Monday night for the championship).

“Tonight was a great team effort,” Florida head coach Kevin O’Sullivan said after Florida’s amazing power display. “We got a chance to get everybody in the ball game. We swung the bats well and got an early lead and got production from the whole lineup.”

Thompson’s three homers and six RBI highlighted a 19-hit attack for the Gators (45-15). Thompson got things going with an RBI double that got the scoring going for the Gators in a three-run second inning. It was a taste of things to come for the sophomore left fielder.

Thompson’s first home run came in the third when the Gators strung together three solo homers to stretch their lead to 6-0. Starting pitcher Brian Johnson led off by curving the first pitch of the inning inside the right field foul pole for a home run. He rounded third base, pointing at the Florida dugout towards relief pitcher Chas Spottswood, who Johnson told before the at-bat that he would hit a home run.

Mike Zunino followed with a towering home run to center field that cleared the 400-foot fence, for the first back-to-back home runs the Gators have hit since April 21 at USF.

After a fly out by Josh Adams, it was Thompson’s chance to cap off the inning with the first of his three homers. He launched a solo home run over the right field scoreboard. When he rounded third base, he looked up to see all the Florida players remaining in the dugout, looking disinterested and unimpressed.

When Thompson ran into the dugout without any praise from a teammate, he took a seat on the bench when the team mobbed him.

“I saw it coming around third that they were doing that,” Thompson said of the silent treatment, while shaking his head with a smile.

Thompson’s fifth-inning home run provided the only run the Gators scored between the third and eighth innings. He went with an outside pitch and drove it over the 365-foot sign on the left-center field fence. The swing secured his first career multi-home run game. But he still wasn’t done.

“I’ve hit two in a game before but never three,” Thompson said.

That is no longer the case.

His two-out home run in the eighth inning was the record setter. FAU brought in left-handed specialist Jason Boyer to face Thompson, but they could have saved the arm in the bullpen. Thompson drove an inside fastball into the right-center bullpen for a three-run home run, making him the first player in Florida history with three home runs in a postseason game.

“No way,” Thompson said with a laugh about what he was thinking after the third home run. “I was just trying to put the ball in play with two strikes. Against a lefty, I’ve been struggling with the bat. I was just trying to put the bat on it.”

Thompson’s teammates wouldn’t let him get all of the home run glory. Earlier in the eighth inning, Preston Tucker made his presence known.

After Nolan Fontana doubled and Matt den Dekker singled to start the inning, Tucker hit a sky-scraping home run just over the glove of jumping right fielder Andy Mee, pushing the Florida lead to 10-0 before Thompson extended it to 13-0 five batters later.

“There was a stretch of games where we were swinging the bats as well as anyone in the league,” Tucker said. “Fortunately, we were swinging the bats well this week.”

The run support for Johnson was a luxury he really didn’t need. The freshman lefty was on his game as the Florida pitching staff recorded its third shutout of the season behind a seven-inning, five-hit stint by Johnson. He didn’t walk a batter and only two base runners made it as far as second base.

“I was just getting ahead in the count,” Johnson said. “I just worked ahead and made them swing at my pitches.”

After his home run, Johnson added two singles in his next two at-bats. All that without even taking batting practice before the game.

Johnson went 5-8 with a triple and a home run over the weekend. His performance at the plate and on the mound earned him honors as the Most Outstanding Player of the Gainesville Regional.

“He had a great weekend,” O’Sullivan said. “I think his breaking ball was really sharp tonight and the changeup was going a little more. When you see him run the bases, the one thing that goes through your mind is you don’t want him to pull a hamstring.”

The freshman left-hander struck out only four batters, but his pinpoint control had FAU hitters uneasy all night. Whenever Johnson had two strikes, he was able to bust the Owls’ hitters inside and catch them off guard, resulting in a strikeout or a weakly hit ground ball.

“That guy is special,” FAU coach John McCormack said of Johnson. “He was able to throw a fastball for strike wherever he wanted. Then, second time through the order, he was about 80 percent with his breaking ball for a strike. Then, he’ll flip in a changeup for good measure.

“He had enough fastball that just kept beating our bats. We were a hair short of getting on it. But no one seemed to get on it this year, really. I don’t know him, but he seems to be a fierce competitor. He got the ball and went right back on the mound. He wanted the ball.”

O’Sullivan’s goal was to get a few relief pitchers into the game for some work before next weekend’s Super Regionals, but Johnson’s sparkling performance was too good for him to be removed. He threw 97 pitches on the night, 70 for strikes.

Tommy Toledo and Kevin Chapman threw the final two innings, recording a total of three strikeouts.

“This time of year is about wins,” O’Sullivan said. “You can overanalyze or over manage it, but we’re just trying to get two more wins to get to Omaha. We do have some work to do this week. We’ve got pitchers who need to get some work in intersquad.”

In 27 innings this weekend, the Florida pitching staff allowed five runs, 27 hits, two walks and struck out 30.

The Gators also didn’t make an error on the weekend. The bats having a breakout game was all that was missing, and now Florida goes into next weekend playing with confidence in all facets of the game.

“If you plan on advancing to the World Series and having a chance to play on the last day of the year you’ve got to play hit, pitch and play defense,” O’Sullivan said. “That’s the most encouraging thing going into next weekend, that we’re doing all three phases as well as we have done them all year long.

“We’ve got our sights on playing for a while into the summer.”

The next step to making that happen comes next weekend. The Gators will get the winner of the Coral Gables Regional, and their championship game is Monday night at 7 p.m. on ESPNU between Miami and Texas A&M. The Florida team will practice for about an hour Monday to allow some unused pitchers to get work, and then the team will be together to watch the Miami-Texas A&M game at night.

Florida will make their fourth appearance in a Super Regional over the past seven years.

All-Regional Team:

Catcher: Mike Zunino, Florida; First Base: Preston Tucker, Florida; Second Base:  Raymond Church, Florida Atlantic; Shortstop: Nolan Fontana, Florida; Third Base: Sean Bukovich, Florida Atlantic; Outfield: Tyler Thompson, Florida; Adalberto Santos, Oregon State and Matt den Dekker, Florida; Designated Hitter: Eddie Cassidy, Florida Atlantic; Pitchers: Hudson Randall, Florida, and Brian Johnson, Florida

Most Outstanding Player: Brian Johnson, Florida

NCAA DIVISION I BASEBALL CHAMPIONSHIP

REGIONALS
/ Friday-Monday, June 4-7 / Double-elimination

(3) FLORIDA / GAINESVILLE REGIONAL

McKethan Stadium / Host: University of Florida

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) Oregon State 6, (2) Florida Atlantic 4

Game 2: (1) Florida 7, (4) Bethune-Cookman 3

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) Florida Atlantic 12, (4) Bethune-Cookman 6; Bethune Cookman (35-22) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Florida 10, (3) Oregon State 2

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Florida Atlantic 11, (3) Oregon State 7; Oregon State (32-24) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Florida 15, (2) Florida Atlantic 0; Florida (45-15) hosts Super Regional versus Coral Gables Regional winner (either Texas A&M or Miami, Fla.); Florida Atlantic (37-24) eliminated

MIAMI, FLA. / CORAL GABLES REGIONAL

Alex Rodriguez Park
/ Host: University of Miami

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (2) Texas A&M 17, (3) Florida International 3

Game 2: (1) Miami, Fla. 12, (4) Dartmouth 8

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (4) Dartmouth 15, (3) Florida International 9; Florida International (36-25) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Miami, Fla. 14, (2) Texas A&M 1

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Texas A&M 4, (4) Dartmouth 3; Dartmouth (27-19) eliminated

Game 6: (2) Texas A&M 11, (1) Miami, Fla. 7; First loss for Miami

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (2) Texas A&M (43-20-1) vs. (1) Miami, Fla. (42-18), 7 p.m.

CAL STATE FULLERTON / FULLERTON REGIONAL

Goodwin Field
/ Host: California State University at Fullerton

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) New Mexico 9, (2) Stanford 5

Game 2: (4) Minnesota 3, (1) Cal State Fullerton 1

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (1) Cal State Fullerton 6, (2) Stanford 5; Stanford (31-25) eliminated

Game 4: (4) Minnesota 6, (3) New Mexico 4 (10 innings)

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (1) Cal State Fullerton 11, (3) New Mexico 3; New Mexico (38-23) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Cal State Fullerton 7, (4) Minnesota 2; First loss for Minnesota

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (1) Cal State Fullerton (44-16) vs. (4) Minnesota (32-29), 11 p.m.

(6) UCLA / LOS ANGELES REGIONAL

Jackie Robinson Stadium
/ Host: University of California, Los Angeles

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (2) Louisiana State 11, (3) UC Irvine 10 (11 innings)

Game 2: (1) UCLA 15, (4) Kent State 1

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (3) UC Irvine 19, (4) Kent State 9; Kent State (39-25) eliminated

Game 4: (1) UCLA 6, (2) Louisiana State 3

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (3) UC Irvine 4, (2) Louisiana State 3; Louisiana State (41-22) eliminated

Game 6: (1) UCLA 6, (3) UC Irvine 2; UCLA (46-13) advances to Super Regional; UC Irvine (39-21) eliminated

(7) LOUISVILLE / LOUISVILLE REGIONAL

Jim Patterson Stadium
/ Host: University of Louisville

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (2) Vanderbilt 8, (3) Illinois State 7 (13 innings)

Game 2: (1) Louisville 11, (4) St. Louis 2

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (3) Illinois State 8, (4) St. Louis 3; St. Louis (33-29) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Louisville 7, (2) Vanderbilt 1

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Vanderbilt 10, (3) Illinois State 4; Illinois State (32-24) eliminated

Game 6: (2) Vanderbilt 7, (1) Louisville 0; First loss for Louisville

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (2) Vanderbilt (44-18) vs. (1) Louisville (50-13), 6 p.m.

CONNECTICUT / NORWICH REGIONAL

Sen. Thomas J. Todd Memorial Stadium
/ Host: University of Connecticut

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (1) Florida State 11, (4) Central Connecticut State 3

Game 2: (3) Oregon 5, (2) Connecticut 3

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) Connecticut 25, (4) Central Connecticut State 5; Central Connecticut State (33-23) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Florida State 6, (3) Oregon 4

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (3) Oregon 4, (2) Connecticut 3; Connecticut (48-16) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Florida State 5, (3) Oregon 3; Florida State (45-17) advances to Super Regional; Oregon (40-24) is eliminated

TEXAS CHRISTIAN / FORT WORTH REGIONAL

Lupton Stadium
/ Host: Texas Christian University

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) Arizona 10, (2) Baylor 9

Game 2: (1) Texas Christian 16, (4) Lamar 3

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) Baylor 6, (4) Lamar 4; Lamar (35-26) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Texas Christian 11, (3) Arizona 5

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Baylor 4, (3) Arizona 2; Arizona (34-23) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Texas Christian 9, (2) Baylor 0; Texas Christian (49-11) advances to Super Regional; Baylor (36-25) eliminated

(2) TEXAS / AUSTIN REGIONAL

UFCU Disch-Falk Field
/ Host: University of Texas

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) Louisiana-Lafayette 1, (2) Rice 0

Game 2: (1) Texas 11, (4) Rider 0

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) Rice 19, (4) Rider 1; Rider (36-23) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Texas 4, (3) Louisiana-Lafayette 2

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Rice 9, (3) Louisiana-Lafayette 1; Louisiana-Lafayette (38-22) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Texas 4, (2) Rice 1; Texas (49-11) advances to Super Regional; Rice (40-23) eliminated

(4) COASTAL CAROLINA / MYRTLE BEACH REGIONAL

BB&T Coastal Field
/ Host: Coastal Carolina University

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (1) Coastal Carolina 6, (4) Stony Brook 0

Game 2: (2) College of Charleston 9, (3) North Carolina State 6

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (4) Stony Brook 6, (3) North Carolina State 2; North Carolina State (38-24) eliminated

Game 4: (2) College of Charleston 16, (1) Coastal Carolina 6

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (1) Coastal Carolina 25, (4) Stony Brook 7; Stony Brook (30-27) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Coastal Carolina 8, (2) College of Charleston 7; First loss for College of Charleston

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (1) Coastal Carolina (54-8) vs. (2) College of Charleston (44-18), 7 p.m.

SOUTH CAROLINA / COLUMBIA REGIONAL

Carolina Stadium
/ Host: University of South Carolina

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) The Citadel 7, (2) Virginia Tech 2

Game 2: (1) South Carolina 9, (4) Bucknell 5

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) Virginia Tech 16, (4) Bucknell 7; Bucknell (25-35) eliminated

Game 4: (1) South Carolina 9, (3) The Citadel 4

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (4) Virginia Tech 4, (3) The Citadel 3; The Citadel (43-22) eliminated

Game 6: (1) South Carolina 10, (2) Virginia Tech 2; South Carolina (46-15) advances to Super Regional; Virginia Tech (40-22) eliminated

OKLAHOMA / NORMAN REGIONAL

L. Dale Mitchell Park
/ Host: Oklahoma University

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (1) Oklahoma 7, (4) Oral Roberts 6 (10 innings)

Game 2: (3) North Carolina 12, (2) California 3

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (4) Oral Roberts 9, (2) California 8; California (29-25) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Oklahoma 7, (3) North Carolina 6 (10 innings)

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (3) North Carolina 12, (4) Oral Roberts 4; Oral Roberts (36-26) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Oklahoma 3, (3) North Carolina 2; Oklahoma (47-15) advances to Super Regional; North Carolina (38-22) eliminated

(5) VIRGINIA / CHARLOTTESVILLE REGIONAL

Davenport Field
/ Host: University of Virginia

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (1) Virginia 15, (4) Virginia Commonwealth 4

Game 2: (2) Mississippi 10, (3) St. John’s 5

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (3) St. John’s 8, (4) Virginia Commonwealth 6; Virginia Commonwealth (34-26-1) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Virginia 13, (2) Mississippi 7

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (3) St. John’s 20, (2) Mississippi 16; Mississippi (39-24) eliminated

Game 6: (2) St. John’s 6, (1) Virginia 5; First loss for Virginia

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (2) St. John’s (43-19) vs. (1) Virginia (49-12), 6 p.m.

(8) GEORGIA TECH / ATLANTA RGIONAL

Russ Chandler Stadium
/ Host: Georgia Institute of Technology

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (2) Alabama 11, (3) Elon 2

Game 2: (1) Georgia Tech 10, (4) Mercer 0

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (4) Mercer 13, (3) Elon 7; Elon (38-24) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Georgia Tech 5, (2) Alabama 2

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Alabama 5, (4) Mercer 3; Mercer (38-24) eliminated

Game 6: (2) Alabama 8, (1) Georgia Tech 1; First loss for Georgia Tech

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (2) Alabama (40-23) vs. (1) Georgia Tech (47-14), 8 p.m.

AUBURN / AUBURN REGIONAL

Plainsman Park
/ Host: Auburn University

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (2) Clemson 10, (3) Southern Mississippi 1

Game 2: (1) Auburn 9, (4) Jacksonville State 7

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (3) Southern Mississippi 19, (4) Jacksonville State 6; Jacksonville State (32-26) eliminated

Game 4: (2) Clemson 5, (1) Auburn 2

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (1) Auburn 17, (3) Southern Mississippi 8; Southern Mississippi (36-24) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Auburn 11, (2) Clemson 10; First loss for Clemson

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (1) Auburn (42-30) vs. (2) Clemson (40-22), 7 p.m.

ARKANSAS / FAYETTEVILLE REGIONAL

Baum Stadium
/ Host: University of Arkansas

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (1) Arkansas 19, (4) Grambling State 7

Game 2: (2) Washington State 8, (3) Kansas State 6

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (3) Kansas State 9, (4) Grambling State 8; Grambling State (22-32) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Arkansas 6, (2) Washington State 4

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (2) Washington State 9, (3) Kansas State 6; Kansas State (37-22) eliminated

Game 6: (2) Washington State 10, (1) Arkansas 7; First loss for Arkansas

Monday, June 7

Game 7: (2) Washington State (37-21) vs. (1) Arkansas (42-19), 8 p.m.

(1) ARIZONA STATE / TEMPE REGIONAL

Winkles Field-Packard Stadium at Brock Ballpark
/ Host: Arizona State University

Friday, June 4

Game 1: (3) Hawaii 4, (2) San Diego 3

Game 2: (1) Arizona State 6, (4) Milwaukee 2

Saturday, June 5

Game 3: (2) San Diego 22, (4) Milwaukee 1; Milwaukee (33-26) eliminated

Game 4: (1) Arizona State 12, (3) Hawaii 1

Sunday, June 6

Game 5: (3) Hawaii 12, (2) San Diego 9; San Diego (37-22) eliminated

Game 6: (1) Arizona State 8, (3) Hawaii 4; Arizona State (50-8) advances to Super Regional; Hawaii (35-28) eliminated

SUPER REGIONALS / Friday-Sunday, June 11-13, 2001 / Best-of-3 series

Fayetteville Regional winner vs. (1) Arizona State (50-8)

Auburn Regional winner at Atlanta Regional winner

Oklahoma (47-15) vs. Charlottesville Regional winner

South Carolina (46-15) vs. Myrtle Beach Regional winner

Texas Christian (49-11) at (2) Texas (49-11)

Florida State (45-17) vs. Louisville Regional winner

Fullerton Regional winner vs. (6) UCLA (46-13)

Coral Gables Regional winner vs. (3) Florida (45-15)

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Words of wisdom from the man they called 'Coach' and our five favorite beaches

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