Panthers and Seminoles split first two games

Pablo Bermudez led the way for FIU with three hits in the opening game against the Seminoles.

Eduardo Almaguer / Staff Writer

Pablo Bermudez led the way for FIU with three hits in the opening game against the Seminoles.

The last time the Panthers beat Florida State University in a baseball game, FIU’s winning pitcher  had not been born yet.
In the first of a three-game series, FIU snapped its 22-year losing streak against the Seminoles after 13 hits led the Panthers to an 8-5 win on the road in Tallahassee, Fla.
FSU was last ranked No. 8 in the country by National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association of America.
On Saturday, however, FSU managed to silence the bats that dominated them the night before, beating them 3-1 despite multiple chances by FIU to score.

FIU 8, FSU 5

R.J. Fondon was not as sharp as his season debut, but he managed to limit the damage, striking out two batters, allowing eight hits, and walking four in 5 1/3 innings.
Senior outfielder Pablo Bermudez and junior Adam Kirsch had their best game at the plate for FIU (1-3) this season after each had three hits in the game, combining for two RBIs and four runs.
After stealing third base, Bermudez, the reigning Sun Belt Player of the Year, scored the first run of the game on a wild pitch in the first inning. Kirsch followed with an RBI single to drive in senior Mike Martinez.
After an FIU error set up an RBI single for FSU in the same inning, junior T.J. Shantz belted a two-run double to give FIU a 4-1 lead.
Sloppy defense in the third inning allowed FSU (3-1) to get back into the game with a two-run double to make it 4-3.
Both teams exchanged a second set of two-run innings, leaving the score at 6-5 as the sixth inning opened.
The Panthers rallied with two outs in the sixth, with sophomore David Vazquez hitting an RBI single to score Kirsch.
FIU tacked on a final run in the eighth inning with a Kirsch double, and then called upon their left-handed closer, Michael Gomez, to shut the Seminoles’ offense down.
Gomez struck out three batters in 2 1/3 innings to earn his first career save and give FIU its first win of the season.
FIU had not won against a top-10 team since 2008.

FSU 3, FIU 1

Though the Panthers escaped the danger of issuing nine walks on Friday, FSU was not going to be fooled twice, taking advantage of the second straight day FIU issued nine walks, beating the team 3-1.
Redshirt junior Mason McVay struck out a career-high nine batters in just four innings, but issued five walks.
The combination of both resulted in 100 pitches for the left-hander, prompting pitching coach Drew French to remove him from the game early.
FIU (1-4) managed to out hit FSU (4-1) again, but could not string together any hits.
Senior Iosmel “Bala” Leon hit a solo homerun in the eighth inning for FIU, but they could not overcome FSU’s Mike Compton, who pitched six innings, allowed only two hits and struck out four Panthers.
McVay walked the bases loaded in the first inning, but escaped the jam by striking out the side. He was not so lucky in the second inning.
After loading the bases again, FSU’s James Ramsey hit a single to drive in two Seminoles and give his team a 2-0 lead.
FIU’s pitching staff managed to hold FSU hitless until the seventh until Ramsey struck again, this time hitting a solo homerun off redshirt sophomore Albert Cardenas.
Leon homered in the eighth inning to cut the deficit to two runs, but the Panthers were not able to mount a comeback.

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