DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The University of Tampa was part of a slugfest Thursday night in Daytona as they defeated Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University by a final score of 14-10. The two teams combined for 37 hits on the night with UT picking up 19 of them. With the victory, the second-ranked Spartans move to 22-4 on the season. The Eagles now dip to 18-11 on the season.
After Tampa struck first with a run in the top of the first inning, Embry-Riddle posted five run in the bottom of the first inning as they recorded six hits in the inning.
The Spartans would respond in the second inning scoring two runs after a Zion Bell single and a Chris Gaffney two-run home run. UT would add another run in the third inning as Vin Cosenzo singled in Kevin Santa to make the game 5-4.
In the fourth inning, UT would tie the game on Gaffney's second home run of the game. They would then retake the lead in the inning when Santa tripled to score Danny Lee.
After holding Tampa scoreless in the fifth and sixth inning, Embry-Riddle would take the lead back at 9-6 after scoring two runs in the fifth and sixth innings.
UT would tie the game again in the seventh inning at nine, as J.D. Osborne, Cosenzo, and Bell each recorded an RBI in the inning. ERAU would quickly regain the lead as they pushed across a run on an Enderson Velasquez single.
In the eighth inning, the lead changed sides again, as the Spartans scored two runs on a Santa ground out scoring Cody deNoyelles and Casey Scoggins scoring on a wild pitch. UT would then add three insurance runs in the top of the ninth to give the 14-10 lead.
Conner Andrews shut the door in the ninth, as he struck out two of the three hitters in the inning.
Andrews (3-0) earned the victory after pitching the final three innings of the game. He allowed two runs in the outing while picking up four strikeouts.
Gaffney led the way offensively as the catcher went 3-for-5 with two home runs. He drove in four runs and came across to score three times.
Santa collected a game-high four hits, as he was just a homer shy of hitting for the cycle. He would also add three RBI for Tampa. Scoggins added two triples on the night, pushing his season total to nine.
As a team, the Spartans hit nine extra-base hits including five triples.
The two teams will wrap up the three-game series tomorrow as they play a doubleheader. Game one is scheduled to start at 3:00 pm.
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