The bats have come alive in the past two days for the UCF baseball team. They followed up an 8-7 win yesterday with a 12-1 win today over Cincinnati that clinched the series victory.
"Offensively, we are certainly having a lot more confidence at the plate and are building upon that," head coach Terry Rooney said. “Everyone felt like it was only a matter of time till we broke out."
With the score even at 1-1, the Knights (24-24, 8-9 AAC) took over in the bottom of the seventh inning behind some spotty defense from the Bearcats (21-25-1, 9-7-1 AAC).
The Knights got the inning started by loading the bases with no outs. A misplayed ground ball by the shortstop allowed freshman Matthew Mike to get the eventual game-winning RBI. A passed ball, a wild pitch and a sacrifice fly would allow the Knights to make it 4-1 going into the eighth.
"Coach Klosty talked with us before the game,” junior Matt Diorio said. “We worked with him really hard this week and did what he said: put the ball in play and if we get in two-strike counts get a competitive at-bat. One through nine, everyone hit the ball well and did a great job today."
Junior pitcher Juan Pimentel got the start today and pitched a gem going eight innings while allowing only one run on five hits, earning him the win.
The Knights sealed the deal in the bottom of the eighth when they busted the game open with seven runs. What was even more impressive was that all seven runs came with two outs.
Diorio had a three-RBI double in the inning and came home to score when junior first baseman Austin Griffin sent a shot over the wall in center field to cap the outstanding offensive performance for the Knights.
UCF will look to go for the sweep against Cincinnati tomorrow at 1 p.m. at Jay Bergman Field.
Matthew Saunders is the Sports Editor for the Central Florida Future. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.