Florida ace Hunter Barco admitted he didn’t have his best stuff on Friday. That didn’t stop him from tossing seven innings of two-hit ball against one of the best lineups in the nation.
“I knew from the time I was in the bullpen that I didn’t have my best stuff…so I just had to go out there and compete”
The Gators also gave Barco a comfortable cushion by hitting three home runs and plating seven runs by seven different guys.
Second baseman Colby Halter opened the game with a solo homer to put Florida up 1-0 and to give Barco all the support he needed. Catcher BT Riopelle roped another solo shot in the fourth to increase the advantage.
Florida tacked on four runs in the fifth highlighted by Wyatt Langford’s two-run, no doubt blast to left that put the Gators up 6-0.
Barco struggled with his command by walking three batters and hitting two more. He also showed emotion on the mound after several big outs, including after striking out LSU leadoff hitter Dylan Crews to end the fifth.
The Gators tacked on a run in the bottom of the sixth as relief pitcher Bryce Collins walked that bases loaded before Colby Halter popped into an infield fly that was misjudged and dropped and allowed Kendrick to score.
Nick Ficarrotta pitched the final two innings to close out the win for the Gators.
Florida improved to 17-5 on the season and 3-1 in the SEC while LSU fell to 15-7 overall and 1-3 in league play.
The two teams will continue the series Saturday with the first pitch scheduled for 6:30 PM.