Gators late rally falls short, spoils Ty Evans impressive day

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The Florida Gators came to life late against the South Carolina Gamecocks on Saturday night at Condron Family Ballpark. The Gators pushed across four runs in the eighth inning and had two runners on with one out in the bottom of the ninth inning.

The Gators’ late rally came up short, though, as they dropped their sixth consecutive game in a 9-8 loss to the Gamecocks.

Junior Ty Evans shined for the Gators, hitting 4-for-4 with a solo home run to far left in the second inning and two doubles.

“We did a nice job coming back in the game,” Florida coach Kevin O’Sullivan said. “But to that point, there’s just a lot of things that are happening that… we’re doing that are not allowing us to be successful.”

Florida (17-17, 6-8 SEC) fell behind in the first inning with a two-run home run from Gamecocks sophomore Ethan Petry.

The Gators quickly bounced back, though, with Evans walking to start the bottom of the first inning. With one man on base and no outs, Jac Caglianone hit a two-run home run to right field, tying the game at 2-2.

The Gamecocks (25-10, 8-6 SEC) responded with three more runs in the second inning. Dalton Reeves was hit by a pitch from Pierce Coppola, who made his return to the mound for his first appearance since 2022 due to injury. Will Tippett, the next batter Coppola faced, hit a double, putting two men on with one out.

Freshman Liam Peterson relieved Coppola, allowing two runners to score off of a double from Gamecocks junior Cole Messina.

Peterson struck out the next batter, but Petry singled to score Messina, putting the Gamecocks ahead 5-2.

Evans started his productive game with a solo home run in the second inning, inching the Gators closer to the Gamecocks.

At the top of the fifth inning, Peterson walked the first two batters, prompting another pitching change.

Righty Blake Purnell came in but also ran into his share of problems. Junior Talmadge LeCroy singled to load the bases for the Gamecocks. Purnell walked the next batter, allowing Kennedy Jones to score from third. Purnell silenced the Gamecocks’ rally, striking out the next three batters to strand three runners on base.

The game got away from the Gators in the seventh. The Gamecocks used a two-run homer by Reeves and two doubles to take a commanding 9-3 advantage.

The Gators responded with a run in the bottom of the seventh inning on a sacrifice fly by Colby Shelton.

In the bottom of the eighth, the Gators began to make a comeback. The Gators loaded the bases to open the inning and the rally was on.

Michael Robertson singled, but the Gamecocks threw Cade out at home plate. Brody Donay blasted a pinch-hit single to center field to score two runs. Robertson scored on a wild pitch, and then Evans singled to drive in a run and cap the four-run inning.

Trailing 9-8 in the bottom of the ninth, the Gators had opportunities to score., With two runners out and one out, Ashton Wilson struck out looking, and Robertson grounded out to end the game.

The Gators had chances throughout the game but stranded nine runners on base.

“We had the leadoff man on in the third, fourth and fifth and didn’t move them,” O’Sullivan said.

Rhiannon Thomas
Rhiannon Thomas
Rhiannon Thomas is a sophomore at the University of Florida, majoring in Sports Journalism. Her favorite sports include baseball, college football and Premier League soccer. Follow her on X (Twitter) @RhiannonTThomas.

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Stay Connected

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

Latest Articles