UF rallies for win in baseball

By wire services
Published March 6, 2005

GAINESVILLE - Brian Leclerc of Clearwater singled in the winning run as Florida's baseball team rallied to beat Villanova 6-5 on Saturday.

Leclerc, a Northside Christian grad, drove in Matt LaPorta in the seventh inning. LaPorta had hit a two-run double to tie the game.

LaPorta drove in the first run of the game, but Villanova scored four runs in the second inning to take the lead.

Bryan Ball (3-0) struck out five and gave up five runs in seven innings. Darren O'Day pitched two scoreless innings to get the save.

Ted Aust (0-1) retired only one batter and gave up the winning run.

UCF 8, SIENA 2: Sophomore pitcher Tim Bascom of Dunedin had a career-high 17 strikeouts for the host Golden Knights.

Bascom was one strikeout shy of tying the school record for a game. He went the distance for his first complete game. "Everything felt good tonight and I really got into a groove," Bascom said. "A key for me was to hit both sides of the plate and to get ahead with a first-pitch strike."

The right-hander allowed two runs on six hits with no walks.

"He came out a little sluggish and then got on such a roll," UCF coach Jay Bergman said. "I was concerned about his pitch count in the late innings, but when you get that close to a school record, you can't deny a player the opportunity to make history."

TAMPA 16-6, ROLLINS 11-5: The host Spartans had 20 hits in the first game, with Lee Cruz and Orlando Rosales each hitting 4-for-6. In the second game, Charlie Raley scored on a wild pitch in the bottom of the eighth inning to win it.

ECKERD 8-4, SHIPPENSBURG 2-5: Jon Campeau pitched a complete game in the first half of the doubleheader, but the Tritons couldn't hold on in the second game and lost in eight innings.

GOLF: Host USF's men's team shot 298 in the second round of the Dick Wittcoff/USF Invitational. USF trailed Florida Southern by seven going into today's final round. Brad Quiri led the Bulls with a second round 74 that put him in fourth place, three behind Brandon Price (73-144) of Mercer. USF's Pablo Ceron moved to sixth place with 73.

SOFTBALL: After tying it twice and sending it into extra innings, USF lost to Florida 6-5 in nine innings. The Bulls had a chance to win in the bottom of the seventh with bases loaded and one out. After back-to-back singles and a walk, a grounder by Samantha Ray allowed the Gators to get the force at home, leaving the bases loaded with two outs. Carmela Liwag flied out to right to leave it tied at 2. After the Gators scored in the eighth, USF's Sarah Watson drove in Carmela Liwag to tie it at 3. The Gators scored three in the ninth, and the Bulls answered with two to lose. ... The host split its two games in the Saint Leo Invitational, beating Tampa 8-0 in the first and losing 3-2 to Central Missouri in eight innings in the second game. Katie Heintz got the shutout in the first game, giving up two hits and striking out 10. Tampa beat Central Missouri 5-0 in its other game.

TENNIS: FSU's men lost its ACC opener 4-3 to host North Carolina State, snapping the Seminoles' 3-match win streak.

TRACK: In the Seminole Invitational, two FSU athletes secured spots in NCAA East Regional Championships, Andrew Diakos in the hammer and Kimberly Walker in the 100-meter dash.

Ohio St. hires AD

Ohio State introduced Gene Smith as its new athletic director, putting the former Arizona State AD in charge of a department that is being investigated by the NCAA about possible improper benefits given to athletes.

Smith, the athletic director at Arizona State since 2000, will replace Andy Geiger, who said he is retiring because he is burned out.

"I know there's been challenges," Smith said. "I know there are pressures that exist. I understand the many challenges in dealing with some of the issues that we've had."

The 49-year-old Cleveland native is the first black athletic director in Ohio State's history. Before Arizona State, he was AD at Iowa State and Eastern Michigan.