Dominant Performance from Murray Propels #FGCU Past Nationally Ranked Florida
Friday, February 28, 2014 | by Matt Moretti III (@Moretts13)
Photo Courtesy: Linwood Ferguson
Photo Courtesy: Linwood Ferguson
FGCU (6-3)
#23 Florida (5-4)
2/27/2014 | Gainesville, FL | Attendance: 2888
Win: MURRAY (2-0) 7.171014
Loss: Logan Shore (0-1) 6.062007
NOLL (FGCU) 402200
Richie Martin (UF) 412000
Casey Turgeon (UF) 402000

WP | Mike Murray (2-1): 7.1 IP 7 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 4 SO
LP | Logan Shore (0-1): 6.0 IP 6 H, 2 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 SO
SV | Brady Anderson (4): 1.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 SO

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Mike Murray tossed 7.1 innings against the nationally ranked Florida Gators (5-4) and surrendered just one run and striking, four to guide the FGCU baseball team (6-3) to a 2-1 victory on Thursday night. Jake Noll drove in both runs to headline his 2-4 effort.

Murray (West Palm Beach, Fla./Forrest Hill HS) loaded the bases in the first, worked out of the jam and it was smooth sailing from there for the sophomore. He would allow just three hits over the second through seventh innings and for the second-consecutive start would not give up an earned run. In 21.2 innings this season Murray has allowed just one earned run, striking out 17 and lowering his ERA to 0.42. 

Noll (Punta Gorda, Fla./Charlotte HS) continued his hot start to the season going 2-4 with a pair of RBI to give him eight for the season. He moved his batting average up to .400 tonight, extended his hitting streak to four games and is now batting .500 since moving into the lead off role.

“I told these guys to come in here this weekend and find their identity and they’re doing just that,” head coach Dave Tollett stated after the game. “They came in here and played a great game tonight and against a ranked opponent, I told them how big this would be. It’s huge for a young club to get a win like this. It’s always a good day when you beat a ranked team.”

Alex Diaz (Miami, Fla./John A. Ferguson) reached on an error in the third and Noll came to the plate and drove a double down the left field line allowing Diaz to circle the bases for the first run of the ball game. That would be all the Eagles would get in the third.

Murray continued to nail down Gators and in the fifth it was Noll again, this time driving in Gage Morey (West Palm Beach, Fla./PB Central HS) to extend the lead to 2-0.

Murray left the game in the eighth after picking up the first out but allowing runners to reach first and second. Brady Anderson (Arcadia, Fla./DeSoto HS) came on in relief and immediately allowed the runners to move to second and third as a result of a pass ball. One run would come in on a ground ball to short but that was all the Gators would get in this one as Anderson nailed down the final five outs to get his fourth save of the season.

FGCU has now taken four-in-a-row from the Gators on their home field but still trail in the all-time series 6-5. The Eagles have however taken four of the last five in the series. The win over the nationally ranked Gators also improves the Eagles’ record against ranked opponents to 11-24 with six more games on the schedule against teams currently ranked in the national polls.

The Eagles will be back in action tomorrow at 1 p.m. against Illinois. The Fighting Illini who are off to a rough start at 2-4. FGCU will face Ryan Castellanos while Zack Tillery t will be throwing for the Green and Blue. Tillery and Castellanos will both be making their season debuts on Friday afternoon.