TAMPA, MARCH. 7, 2017 – The University of South Florida baseball team jumped on the opposition early with eight runs in the first two innings to give the arms more than enough aid to earn a 10th-straight victory in Tuesday’s 12-6 decision over Jacksonville.
The Bulls (11-1) stomped early with three runs in the first, as three walks and two hit by pitches ignited the inning. Sophomore Chris Chatfield (Riverview, Fla.) drove in the last two runs with a deep double to left field that hit the fence before making its way down.
The second inning began very similarly to the first for USF, as sophomore Garrett Zech (Naples, Fla.) was hit by a pitch. He stole second, then three singles and a walk later, the Bulls had added three more runs to lead 6-0. A balk allowed another run to score contributing to the five that crossed home plate in the frame, giving USF an 8-0 advantage.
Senior Ryan Valdes (Tampa) allowed two base runners in the first inning but settled down with his massive insurance, retiring the last 11 men he faced. The Bulls were able to add three more to the edge before the end of the fifth, making it 11-0 at one point.
The Dolphins scored all six of their runs in the final three innings, but it was too little too late.
· The Bulls saw 11 men record hits, led by sophomore Joe Genord (Lake Worth, Fla.) with a 2-for-4 night and a team-best three RBI.
· Chatfield, Zech, and senior Luke Borders (Winter Haven, Fla.) also had two hits, a a combined three runs scored and three RBI.
· The Bulls are riding a 10-game winnings streak, the longest since 2013, when the team won 12 straight.
· The win streak is the third-longest in the nation.
· The Bulls quietly gave up more than four runs for the first time this season, but the team ERA is still top-10 nationally.
· USF has now scored 10 or more runs three times this season after doing so twice all of last year.
The Bulls get right back to the grind tomorrow evening when they host Villanova at 6:30 p.m.
About USF Baseball
The University of South Florida baseball team is one of the fastest rising programs in the country. Under the guidance of head coach Mark Kingston, the Bulls reached the NCAA Regionals in 2015 for the first time in 13 years and USF followed that success with a consensus Top 10 recruiting class. Five players from that recruiting class were everyday starters in 2016 including outfielder Chris Chatfield (Riverview, Fla.), who led the team in home runs, and catcher Joe Genord (Lake Worth, Fla.), who was named the 2016 PGCBL Player of the Year. The Bulls won series from two ranked teams in 2016 (No. 21 East Carolina, No. 25 Michigan State, began the 2017 season with a series win over Iowa and earned just it’s second win over a top-five team with a 4-2 victory against No. 3 Florida State on Feb. 21.
The USF Baseball program has won five conference titles and the Bulls have made 11 NCAA appearances. Follow the baseball team on social media (Twitter | Facebook | Instagram), visit GoUSFBulls.com for the most up-to-date information, and purchase tickets for upcoming games at USFBullsTix.com. For tickets, contact the USF Ticket Office at 1-800-Go-Bulls or by going online to USFBullsTix.com.