Early start propels FSU Baseball in 16-3 win over Samford
Rhett Aplin and Dylan Busby each drove in four runs in the Florida State baseball team's 16-3 win over Samford on Friday at Dick Howser Stadium.
The Seminoles' onslaught began early. FSU (3-2) held a 5-0 lead in the first inning after Quincy Nieporte and Aplin hit RBI singles and Busby crushed a three-run home run to left field. The lead was 9-2 by the end of the second.
Freshman outfielder J.C. Flowers hit his first career home run and Aplin hit a RBI single for a 7-1 lead. Busby followed with a RBI single to center with Nick Derr bringing in a run on a throwing error for a 9-2 advantage.
"I saw a ball club from the very beginning and I said this to them in there: 'Approach the game in a manner that makes me as a Seminole proud.' We got after it," Seminoles coach Mike Martin said. "To get a nine spot in the first two innings was aggressive, intelligent, just a great start. A nine-run lead after two innings, you think you're in very good shape."
Early run support only made life easier for sophomore starting pitcher Cole Sands.
Sands, who starred at nearby Tallahassee (Fla.) North Florida Christian, went five innings and allowed two earned runs, three hits and recorded six strikeouts.
He opened with two strikeouts in the first yet gave up a two-run home run to Bulldogs' left fielder Kevin Williams in the second inning. Sands would hold Samford (2-2) scoreless for the rest of the outing.
Sands is now 2-0 with a 1.69 earned run average with eight strikeouts through 10.2 innings to begin the season.
FSU would add five more runs in the bottom of the fourth to stretch the lead to 14-2. Aplin, who finished 4 for 5, hit a two-run home run followed by RBIs from Flowers, Taylor Walls and Jackson Lueck. The Seminoles would add another run in the bottom of the fifth to push the lead to 15-2.
Martin used four relievers to end the game. Grant Stewart, Clayton Kwiatkowski and Will Zirzow all recorded scoreless frames. Brandon Reitz allowed one run in his lone inning of work.
FSU would tack on another run for a 16-3 lead in the bottom of the eighth.
"That's a good ball club. We beat a good ball club," Martin said of Samford. "That's not a ball club that wins 20 to 25 ball games a year. You look at their numbers over the last five years, it's been very impressive."
FSU and Samford will resume at 1 p.m. Saturday with the Seminoles starting sophomore Tyler Holton and the Bulldogs will start Mikhail Cazenave.