USF hands Gators first loss of the season

Florida Gators freshman Jud Fabian launched a solo home run to left field in the top of the sixth inning but there wasn’t much else good to come out of Tuesday night’s game.

The Gators struck out a season high 13 times on the way to a 6-1 loss at the hands of USF. The Bulls were coming off of a 2-1 series win over Samford, while the Gators swept Long Beach State over the weekend.

The Bulls wasted no time getting to starter Hunter McMullen. The sophomore gave up two singles and a walk to load the bases with no outs. Joe Genord reached on a fielder’s choice and former Gator Austin Bodrato drove in a second run before McMullen could get out of the inning.

“It started on the mound, we fell behind early in the first inning, gave up two runs,” Kevin O’Sullivan said. “This was our first road game and obviously we didn’t handle the stage very well.”

USF tacked on another run in the third inning with a Genord solo home run to left field. McMullen walked the next batter ending his outing after just 2.1 innings. Sophomore Justin Alintoff took over on the mound. He threw well and held the score at 3-0 until Fabian’s home run — Florida’s first hit of the evening — in the sixth inning.

The Gators looked like they would have a chance to tie the game in the seventh. Florida got runners on the corners with nobody out with Wil Dalton coming up.

“With such a young team, these are the types of games and experiences that we’re going to learn from. We hit a couple of balls to the warning track,” O’Sullivan said. “I think three, early in the game. We kept it a two-run game and had first and third with nobody out [in the seventh inning] and had Wil [Dalton] up. That was a tough at bat for us, I think if we had been able to score a run there things could have been a little bit different.”

Florida didn’t push across those runs and USF responded with three more runs of their own in the seventh. To push the lead to 6-1. That’s where it would stay.

Florida will be back on the field Wednesday night at 6 p.m. hosting UNF.

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Nick de la Torre
A South Florida native, Nick developed a passion for all things sports at a very young age. His love for baseball was solidified when he saw Al Leiter’s no-hitter for the Marlins live in May of 1996. He was able to play baseball in college but quickly realized there isn’t much of a market for short, slow outfielders that hit around the Mendoza line. Wanting to continue with sports in some capacity he studied journalism at the University of Central Florida. Nick got his first start in the business as an intern for a website covering all things related to the NFL draft before spending two seasons covering the Florida football team at Bleacher Report. That job led him to GatorCountry. When he isn’t covering Gator sports, Nick enjoys hitting way too many shots on the golf course, attempting to keep up with his favorite t.v. shows and watching the Heat, Dolphins and Marlins. Follow him on twitter @NickdelatorreGC