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FSU, Gators win their baseball Super Region openers

CHANGE OF HEART: Alabama coach Nick Saban, in the past a critic of satellite camps, visits USF and coach Charlie Strong.

JOEY KNIGHT | Times

CHANGE OF HEART: Alabama coach Nick Saban, in the past a critic of satellite camps, visits USF and coach Charlie Strong.

TALLAHASSEE — Jackson Lueck had four hits, including the winner in the ninth inning, and four RBIs as Florida State rallied from a four-run second-inning deficit to defeat Sam Houston State 7-6 on Saturday in Game 1 of the Tallahassee Super Region.

Taylor Walls opened the ninth with a single and Dylan Busby was hit by a Nick Mikolajchak pitch. Lueck then got his third walkoff hit of the season, a single to right-center to score Walls.

Lueck wasn't feeling well but said there was no chance of missing the game. "I was going to play no matter what," Lueck said. "Definitely wasn't going to let these guys go out there and compete and not be behind them."

Lueck, a sophomore rightfielder, is 10-for-24 with eight RBIs in six NCAA tournament games this season.

Sam Houston State (44-22) scored four in the first two innings off two errors by FSU starter Tyler Holton. The Bearkats had a comfortable lead for much of the game. But the Seminoles (44-21), trailing 6-3 in the seventh, tied it on RBI singles by Lueck, Quincy Nieporte and Cal Raleigh.

All 20 hits in the game (13 by FSU) were singles.

FSU, 11-1 in its past 12 games, can advance to its first College World Series since 2012 with a win today (noon, ESPN2).

UF takes a marathon

GAINESVILLE — Ryan Larson's two-out, bases-loaded single up the middle in the 11th gave Florida a 2-1 win over Wake Forest in their Super Region opener. The Gators overcame struggles at the plate — they had loaded the bases on a walk and two hit batters in the 11th — and a weather delay of 3 hours, 49 minutes. UF totaled four hits. Gators starter Alex Faedo, a former Alonso High standout, had nine strikeouts in four scoreless innings, then didn't return after the delay.

MORE SUPER REGIONS: Two teams clinched College World Series berths: Louisville and Texas A&M. Drew Ellis homered twice as host Louisville topped Kentucky 6-2. … Host Texas A&M used a seven-run rally in the eighth inning to topple Davidson 12-6. … John Gavin pitched a seven-hitter, leading visiting Cal State Fullerton to a 12-0 victory over Long Beach State to force a decisive third game today. Long Beach State will play its fourth elimination game of the postseason. … Evan Skoug hit a go-ahead two-run homer in the eighth, sending host TCU past Missouri State 3-2 in their opener. Skoug's one-out shot came on the fourth pitch from Jordan Knutson, who replaced Dylan Coleman after the starter threw a season-high 132 pitches.

Saban at USF camp

TAMPA — With one casual step through the east gate of the Morsani Football Practice Complex, Alabama coach Nick Saban took a giant leap for satellite camp proponents nationally.

Previously an outspoken satellite-camp detractor, Saban made what is believed to be his first appearance at such a gathering Saturday afternoon, arriving in the waning stages of USF coach Charlie Strong's one-day minicamp that attracted hundreds of state and local recruits.

Saban offered neither instruction nor a group speech but met on the side with a handful of notable campers. The first with whom he met: Armwood High athlete Jerome Ford and Hawks athlete Warren Thompson, deemed three- and four-star prospects, respectively, by 247Sports.

Crimson Tide offensive line coach Brent Key and receivers coach Mike Locksley were among the dozens of other coaches from various schools on hand, arriving well in advance of Saban. Key got quality face time with 6-foot-6 Berkeley Prep four-star offensive tackle Nicholas Petit-Frere.

Last year, Saban said he was against satellite camps because they incorporate third parties into recruiting.

The NCAA recently established new guidelines on satellite camps, mandating they be conducted on university facilities or facilities used by universities for games or practices. The new rules also limit 10 days to be used for camps in both June and July.

Saban was believed to be slated to also attend a Butch Davis camp at Florida International on Saturday.

Meantime, Strong hosts another minicamp today featuring, among others, Ohio State coach Urban Meyer and Mississippi State's Dan Mullen. Mullen and Strong were coordinators for Meyer's 2006 and '08 national title teams at Florida.

UF WINS men's TRACK TITLE: With freshman Grant Holloway on the anchor leg, the Gators finished fourth in the final event, the 4x100-meter relay Friday night, giving them just enough points to repeat as NCAA men's outdoor track and field national champions. The Gators finished with 61.5 points, two ahead of Texas A&M, in Eugene, Ore. In the women's championships Saturday, Florida's Kyra Jefferson broke a 28-year-old NCAA record in winning the 200 meters in 22.02 seconds. The record of 22.04 was set by Dawn Sowell of LSU in 1989. UF finished fifth overall. Oregon took the title.

Times staff writer Joey Knight contributed to this report.

FSU, Gators win their baseball Super Region openers 06/10/17 [Last modified: Saturday, June 10, 2017 10:59pm]
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