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April 28, 2012
Behind six strong shutout innings from starter Mike Compton, No. 1 Florida State blanked its sixth opponent of the season Saturday night with a 2-0 win over Rhode Island at Dick Howser Stadium.
The Seminoles allowed a season-low two hits and scored all the runs they would need on a sacrifice fly by Jayce Boyd in the first inning and a passed ball to score Stephen Spradling in the second inning.
Behind Compton the FSU bullpen allowed just one walk and no hits in the final three innings as Brian Busch, Hunter Scantling, and Robert Benincasa each pitched a scoreless inning. Benincasa picked up his 11th save of the year striking out two batters in the ninth inning.
"Any way you look at this game it starts with the guy on the bump," FSU head coach Mike Martin said. "We had four guys that went out there and pitched extremely well."
Compton allowed just two hits and three walks in his six innings pitched. He also struck out two batters, and allowed no runs for the second time in his career improving to 8-0.
"I think it was definitely hitting the outside with the fastball," the freshman said of what was working. "I didn't try to go inside too much. Went inside occasionally with the left handed batters which worked sometime but I hit a guy. Slider kept them off balance but didn't get a lot strikes called with it. It was mainly just fastball command, getting ground balls and the defense was phenomenal like usual tonight."
Busch replaced Compton in the seventh inning as he stuck out two and walked one. Martin was relived by the outing because against Boston College in his last outing on April 15, the senior reliever allowed four earned runs on thee hits and a walk.
"It was a lift for us to see," Martin said. "Busch looked a little bit like the Brian Busch that has been here for three years."
URI gave up just four hits and three walks in the game, but FSU was able to reach base six times on hit by pitches. FSU was unable to take advantage leaving nine runners stranded, including leaving the bases loaded in the sixth and eighth innings.
Sill a much-improved defensive effort from Friday night, when FSU recorded three errors, kept the Rams scoreless. The Seminoles turned two double plays including a spectacular 5-4-3 double play started by a nifty play by third baseman Sherman Johnson.
"The play Sherman made was a big league play," Martin said. "That was just as good as it gets. We just got it done. We had our chances to so-called bust it open, but you just tip your hat to that club over there. They did a good job of making pitches."
FSU will go for its seventh weekend series sweep on Sunday at 1 p.m. Scott Sitz (2-2, 3.58 ERA) will start for the Seminoles (35-7), while Rhode Island (26-18) will go with Sean Furney (4-0, 2.14 ERA).
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