TAMPA, Fla. – No. 1 seed University Tampa Spartans came out on top in a 12-inning decision against No. 5 seed Nova Southeastern University at the NCAA South I Regional.
INSIDE THE MATCHUP:
Final: No.1 Tampa Spartans 6, No. 5 Nova Southeastern Sharks 5
Records: Tampa (39-14), Nova Southeastern (34-17)
Location: UT Baseball Field | Tampa, Fla.
All-time Series: Tampa now leads the all-time series by a 46-20 mark.
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HOW IT HAPPENED:
- Nova Southeastern grabbed a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first via an RBI single and sacrifice fly.
- The Spartans took their first lead of the game with a three-run fourth, going ahead 3-2. Nick Derr was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to start the UT scoring as the other runs came via a Danny Blair single and Nova run-scoring wild pitch.
- Tampa stretched its lead to 5-2 in the eighth on a Danny Sirven RBI single followed by a Stevie Mangrum double that plated Yorvis Torrealba.
- The Sharks shocked the crowd at UT Baseball field with a game-tying 3-run home run in the bottom of the eight, knotting the score at 5-5.
- Tampa took the 6-5 lead in the 12th as Freitas led off the frame with a single. The Spartan third baseman moved to second on a Stephen Smith sacrifice bunt and would then score on a two-base fielding error by the Sharks shortstop.
INSIDE THE STATS:
- Mangrum was 4-for-6 from the plate with a run and RBI.
- Freitas would add three hits while also drawing a walk and scoring a pair of crucial runs.
- Finishing with two hits for UT was Torrealba, Sirven and Nick DeTringo.
- The Spartans outhit the Sharks 15 to 8.
- Mason Duke settled down after the first to pitch a gem for the Spartans. He would go 7.0 innings, allowing just five hits and two runs while striking out five.
- Tyler Beck threw a career-high 5.0 innings and earned the win as the first-team all-region performer moved to 3-3 on the year. He also registered five strikeouts.
OUTSIDE THE BOX:
- The Spartans needed just one win on Sunday in the double-elimination South I Regional.
- Tampa has now appeared in 20 consecutive NCAA tournaments, dating back to 2000.
- Head coach Joe Urso has reached the NCAA postseason every season since he started in 2001.
- UT is looking for its first NCAA South Region championship and trip to Cary, N.C., since its national championship season in 2015.
The Spartans will host Delta State University, who captured the South II Championship. The two will meet in a best of three series beginning Friday to represent the South Region at the NCAA Division II Baseball Championship Series in Cary, N.C.
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