SOUTH BEND, IN. (Seminoles.com) — (Editors Note: Florida State and Notre Dame will play a doubleheader Saturday to conclude their series. First pitch for game one will be at 1 p.m. with game two starting roughly 45 minutes afterwards.)
Freshman southpaw Parker Messick continued his season-long dominance Friday, allowing just one run in six innings with eight strikeouts in No. 13 Florida State’s 5-2 win at No. 2 Notre Dame. The Seminoles (24-16, 16-12 ACC) and Fighting Irish (24-9, 21-9) each had just four hits, but Davis Hare (two-run single) and Elijah Cabell (three-run home run) both had hits with runners on base for the Seminoles.
Messick has now won four consecutive games and is 6-2 on the season. He has 11 consecutive starts with at least 5.0 innings pitched and two or fewer earned runs allowed.
Jack Anderson entered to start the seventh inning and earned his third save in the past week.
The Irish took an early lead, loading the bases in the first inning courtesy of a double, walk and a single before FSU recorded an out. Jack Brannigan lofted a sacrifice fly to center field for the 1-0 lead, but Messick limited the damage to just the one run.
Notre Dame loaded the bases again, this time with one out, in the third inning, before Messick notched a strikeout and a fielder’s choice ground ball to end the frame. After getting out of the bases loaded jam in the third, Messick faced the minimum over the next three innings, with his only baserunner allowed getting thrown out to end the sixth inning.
The heart of Florida State’s order responded in the fourth inning against Will Mercer (1-2). After two quick outs, Mat Nelson drew a full-count walk and Robby Martin singled for FSU’s first hit of the day. After Cabell loaded the bases with another full-count walk, Hare lined a two-run single through the right side for a 2-1 FSU lead.
Mercer breezed through the first three innings on just 28 pitches; he threw 29 in the fourth.
Tanner Kohlhepp relieved Mercer in the sixth inning and was rolling before the ninth inning, when Nelson was hit by a pitch and Martin walked before Cabell’s 12th home run of the season snuck just inside the right field foul pole.
Cabell’s home run proved big when the Irish scored a run in the bottom of the ninth against Anderson, but the sophomore battled back and forced a game-ending groundout.
The win improved Florida State to 9-5 on the road this season. All 14 games have come against Top 20 competition and FSU now leads the ACC with 14 wins against Top 25 opponents this year.
Game two of the series is set for Saturday at 1:00 p.m. on ACC Network.
- Parker Messick retook the ACC ERA lead from Tanner Kohlhepp, lowering his season mark to 2.37. Messick has thrown at least 5.0 innings and allowed two or fewer earned runs in 11 consecutive starts.
- Messick’s eight strikeouts give him 99 for the season.
- Jack Anderson earned the third save of his career, all coming over the past four games, allowing a run with two strikeouts over the final three innings. Anderson did walk a batter, snapping a stretch of 36 strikeouts between walks. He now has a 39-4 strikeout-to-walk ratio on the season.
- Elijah Cabell’s three-run home run in the ninth inning was his 12th of the season. The sophomore had two of FSU’s four hits and, over his current six-game hitting streak, is hitting 10-for-18 with five runs, eight RBI, four home runs and four walks. He has reached base safely in 27 of the past 28 games.
- Davis Hare’s two-run single in the fourth inning gave FSU a 2-1 lead. He is now hitting 10-for-26 this season.
- Tyler Martin was hit by a pitch for the 11th time this season, most on the team. He has reached base in 50 of 54 career starts.
- Mat Nelson did not extend his 10-game hitting streak, but did reach base three times – a walk and two hit by pitches. He has reached base in 11 straight games and is now tied with Elijah Cabell (and others) for 10th in FSU history with 31 career HBPs. It was his sixth career game getting hit by two pitches.
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