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USF's McHargue ties school record with 3 home runs

By wire services
Published April 5, 2004

TAMPA - Sophomore Matt McHargue hit three home runs, tying a school record and leading South Florida to an 11-6 victory Sunday over Saint Louis at Red McEwen Field.

It was the second sweep of a conference opponent by the Bulls (22-8, 7-2 C-USA).

"First of all, it's good that Matt McHargue showed up," baseball coach Eddie Cardieri said. "I feel somewhat fortunate that we hung in there and won the game. It could have gone either way for a large portion of the game."

McHargue is the fourth Bull to hit three homers in a game, joining Joe Perna (1980), Todd Waggoner (1984), Rich Bruney (1993) and Chris Heintz (1996). The former Wharton High standout finished with a career-high six RBIs.

"I was seeing the ball good," said McHargue, who has eight home runs. "The wind was blowing out and I got lucky and got the balls up in that wind. The most (home runs) I've ever hit was two."

Left-hander Matt Ingram (1-1) got his first victory of the season.

FSU 10, N.C. STATE 3: Derrick Smith hit a three-run homer and Eddy Martinez-Esteve had three hits to lead the host Seminoles (23-9, 6-3 ACC). Mark Sauls (2-1) pitched seven strong innings, allowing three earned runs on 10 hits and striking out six.

GEORGIA 9, FLORIDA 5: Josh Smith went 2-for-2 with four RBIs and the visiting Bulldogs used a five-run first inning to topple the Gators (25-8, 5-4 SEC). Matt LaPorta had a two-run double for UF.

MIAMI 16, GEORGIA TECH 13: Ryan Braun had four hits and Brian Barton had four RBIs for visiting Miami (24-6). UM overpowered Tech with four homers.

Tennis: UF women clinch share of SEC

Florida won its 34th straight match and clinched at least a tie for the SEC regular-season title, defeating host Mississippi 7-0.

The title is the Gators' 20th in the 25-year history of league play. UF (17-0, 10-0) has two regular-season dual matches remaining, including one in the SEC.

"What I like most about this team is its focus," coach Roland Thornqvist said. "I congratulated them after the match for clinching no worse than a tie for the SEC title, and they had no clue what they had done."

MORE TENNIS: USF women snapped a three-match losing streak, defeating Troy State 5-2 in the final home match for the Bulls (4-12). Florida men (12-6, 5-3 SEC) defeated conference-leader Mississippi 4-3 in Gainesville. FSU men (10-8, 3-3 ACC) lost to host Georgia Tech 5-2.

Cal gymnast highlights final day

Graham Ackerman made sure California didn't leave the men's gymnastics championships without some souvenirs.

Ackerman won the floor exercise and vault finals and tied for second on the high bar, salvaging a disappointing meet in Champaign, Ill., for the Golden Bears. Teammate Randall Heflin finished second to Ackerman on floor.

"It was beyond my expectations," Ackerman said. "I knew I was in the running on floor, vault and high bar. You hope, but this was as good as I could have hoped for."

Cal looked like the team to beat after finishing the qualifying round with the highest score of any squad. But the Bears got off to a rough start in Saturday night's team finals and never recovered, finishing sixth. Penn State won its record 11th men's title, beating two-time champion Oklahoma 223.350-222.300. Top-ranked Illinois was third with 222.225.

Penn State's Kevin Tan won the still rings for a second straight year, giving the Nittany Lions golds in the team competition, all-around and event finals. All-around champ Luis Vargas tied for second on the pommel horse and just missed a medal on the parallel bars, finishing fourth after botching his dismount and landing on his backside.

Illinois captured two event titles, with Bob Rogers winning the pommel horse and Justin Spring the high bar. Ramon Jackson of William and Mary won the parallel bars crown.

Other sports

SOFTBALL: USF beat visiting Saint Louis 11-0 in six innings, the Bulls' third straight conference sweep. Tiffany Stewart hit a grand slam for USF (42-7, 10-2 C-USA). ... Florida (35-8, 12-6 SEC) lost its first conference series, 8-0 to visiting Georgia.

GOLF: The USF women finished second in the Ryder/Florida Championship in Miami Lakes. The Bulls shot a final-round 306 to finish at 923, seven shots behind winner Rollins, in the 14-team event. Miami was third at 924 followed by FSU at 927. Fernanda Rivera led USF, tying for fourth with FSU's Katie Quinney at 228. ... The Florida women finished 10th out of 18 teams in the Bryan Park National Collegiate in Brown Summit, N.C.

TRACK: Florida's Kim Barrett set a school record in the shot put at 56-101/4 in the USF Track and Field Invitational on Saturday. Andrea Bliss won the 100-meter hurdles in 13.49 seconds.

[Last modified April 5, 2004, 01:20:27]

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