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February 25, 2012
No. 8 Florida State evened up its weekend series with Florida International with a 3-1 win at Dick Howser Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Freshman pitcher Mike Compton improved to 2-0 on the year as he tossed six shutout innings, walking two and striking out two. Center fielder James Ramsey led the offense, driving in all three FSU runs with a two-run single in the second and a solo home run in the seventh.
"It's fun to see us play this kind of baseball because this what we're going to be faced with most of the year with the league being what it is," FSU head coach Mike Martin said. "It goes to show you strength of the Golden Panthers. FIU's got a good ball club and did a great job."
Compton's start was the longest outing of the season by a Seminole starter. The right-hander never faced more than four batters in an inning as he threw 86 pitches and the defense turned two double plays behind him.
"I relied a lot on the fastball, inside-out," Compton said. "A couple of them got up and they were able to chase it and pop it up. It was mainly my fastball and some sliders."
FSU had a chance to score some runs in the first inning, loading the bases with just one out. But both Justin Gonzalez and John Nogowski wend down swinging.
After leaving 15 runners on base in Friday's loss to the Panthers, Ramsey made sure to not let another opportunity slip away in the second. His single to left with the bases loaded gave FSU a 2-0 lead. It was the first time that FSU (5-1) had scored first this season.
"I knew that they were going to have to come after me," He said. "I swung at probably a ball honestly on a 3-1 (count), but it was a fastball and I like the ball down. Just to be able to do that for my team is something - I've been walking a lot and not having chances with guys on base - but as soon as I have the opportunity I'm going to step up for my teammates."
FIU got its second solid outing of the weekend from starter Mason McVay, who allowed just two runs on three hits and five walks in his four innings. Of the 12 outs he recorded, nine were strikeouts, but he was forced out of the game after four innings with 104 pitches thrown.
Compton handed the ball over to senior reliever Hunter Scantling in the seventh. Scantling allowed just two hits in his two innings of work, including a solo home run from FIU catcher Leon Iosmel in the eighth.
Junior Robert Beincasa closed things out in the ninth inning, allowing one hit and striking out one batter to earn his first career save. In five innings this season, Benincasa has allowed just two hits, zero walk, and seven strikeouts, which prompted his move into the closer's role.
"It was exciting just because of the end result," Benincasa said. "Nothing really changes between closing and relieving. It's kind of the same thing. I'm out there to do my job and luckily I was able to do that."
FSU will go for the series victory over FIU on Sunday as sophomore Peter Miller (0-0, 5.40 ERA) takes the mound for the Seminoles against fellow sophomore Mike Ellis (0-0, 1.69 ERA) at 1 p.m. ET.
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