FORT MYERS, Fla. - Following a split of the opening two games of the Atlantic Sun Conference weekend series, the FGCU baseball team fell to visiting Jacksonville, 6-0, in the deciding third game on Sunday afternoon at Swanson Stadium.
The loss moves the Eagles’ record to 22-22 (11-10 A-Sun) while the Dolphins improved their mark to 26-16 (16-8 A-Sun) on the season.
Jacksonville jumped ahead on the scoreboard in the early stages of the contest, plating five runs over the opening three frames. In their first chance at the plate, the Dolphins moved a pair of runs across the dish on two hits, and followed with one run in the second and two in the third to hold a 5-0 advantage heading to the middle innings.
The Blue and Green threatened in their side of the sixth, as freshman Sean Dwyer (Leesburg, Fla./Tavares HS) started the inning with a double down the right line and advanced to third on a single up the middle by senior Mikel Alvarez (West Palm Beach, Fla./Palm Beach Central HS). An attempted squeeze bunt by freshman Brandon Bednar (Stuart, Fla./South Fork HS) was unsuccessful as Dwyer was tagged out a home plate on a fielder’s choice, however, the Eagles still held runners on first and second with just one out. Another single in the inning by senior Tim Roberson (West Palm Beach, Fla./Palm Beach Central HS) loaded the bases for FGCU, but JU worked its way out the jam by retiring the following two hitters to hold on to the 5-0 advantage.
In the top of the seventh, the Dolphins tacked on another run to push their lead to 6-0. With two outs and a runner on third, a wild pitch delivery allowed JU’s Daniel Gulbransen to touch the plate and add the lone insurance run.
FGCU went down quietly over its final three chances at the plate as JU took the series finale with a 6-0 victory.
The Eagles received one-hit outings from six players in the starting lineup, including a 1-for-3 game from Roberson and Dwyer, and a 1-for-2 day from freshman Jake Foley (Punta Gorda, Fla./Charlotte HS).
Going three innings, freshman right-hander Harrison Cooney (Vero Beach, Fla./Vero Beach HS) (3-2) started the contest for the Blue and Green, allowing five runs (two earned) on six hits and a pair of strikes in the loss. Junior righty Jason Forjet (Fort Lauderdale, Fla./Nova HS) and right-handed classmate Jacob Barnes (St. Petersburg, Fla./St. Petersburg HS) each tossed three innings in relief, as Forjet recorded one strikeout and allowed just one hit and Barnes surrendered one run on two hits to go along with four strikeouts.
A strong performance on the mound resulted in the fifth win of the season for JU’s southpaw Matthew Tomshaw (5-3). The senior issued just one walk in addition to the six hits on his way to a complete game shutout.
The Eagles will hit the road for a mid-week matchup with FIU on Tuesday beginning at 6 p.m. in Miami, Fla. FGCU then lands back at home for a crucial three-game A-Sun series with No. 27 Stetson, who tops the league standings, starting Friday, May 6 at 6:30 p.m. Live stats, in-game Twitter updates (@FGCUBaseball), results and recaps from every contest will be available at www.FGCUAthletics.com.