June 9, 2008

2008 Super Regionals

Seminoles Stop Shocks

FSU tops WSU to reach Omaha for first time since 2000


By Matt Hickman

Sports Editor, FSView


Matt Hickman is a senior at Florida State University and looks forward to graduating at summer's end. He hails from Lakeland, Fla., but currently resides in Tallahassee. Matt is currently the head sports editor for his school's newspaper, the FSView.


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - The Florida State Seminoles can now pack their bags for Omaha, punching their ticket to the College World Series with an 11-4 victory Sunday over the Wichita State Shockers. 


In the deciding Game 3, the Seminoles scored six runs in the first inning and never looked back as they earned their first trip to Omaha since 2000.


“I don't think I have ever wanted anything more for a group because of the kind of men that they are,” FSU head coach Mike Martin said. “Isn't it appropriate for three of them [Jack Rye, Buster Posey and Ryan Strauss] that made our program what it is are up here now. It was a big win for our baseball program and this team is special... I will say to all of you, I look forward to seeing you in Omaha and that is my favorite saying this time of the year.”

The pitching matchup featured FSU’s Geoff Parker against WSU’s Anthony Capra.


In the first inning, right fielder Jack Rye hit a three-run homer, his first since mid-May, to set the pace for the ’Noles. Not to be outdone, second baseman Tommy Oravetz hit a bases-loaded double to clear the bases and make it 6-0 FSU after one inning.

“Jack's hit was big, and Tommy's hit was big, but credit the guys in the middle there for getting on base,” Martin said.

Wichita State started to turn the momentum back in the second inning when a pop foul was grabbed away from the Seminoles on fan interference. Shockers’ centerfielder Andy Dirks hit the next pitch for a two-run home run. Parker ran into a trouble again in the third, surrendering a two-RBI single to catcher Tyler Weber that cut the Tribe's lead to 6-4.


“Well, I mean we were still down by four runs there [in the second inning], it got us some runs on the board, but the bottom line was we were gonna have to score more,” WSU’s Dirks said. “As far as it being in the cards for us, obviously the scoreboard said it wasn't. We played hard, like Gene [Stephenson] said, we had a couple of guys, two of our horses that we've ridden all year that have done a great job and they're the reason that we are here. They just got hit around a little bit and gave up some runs but those guys, I'm sure they wish they could have it back and it wasn't because they're not trying. They gave their best effort.”


Capra only lasted two-thirds of an inning and surrendered six runs. FSU’s Parker did not fair much better and was done after just three innings and 72 pitches. On the day he gave up four earned runs on four hits, two walks and two hit batters.

In the seventh inning, Seminoles catcher Buster Posey proved why he is the National Player of the Year, hitting a two-run bomb to left. Posey’s 26th home run of the season made the score 9-4.

FSU’s Ryan Strauss, who relieved Parker in the fourth, pitched beautifully, throwing six shutout innings and allowing just one hit and one run to pick up the win.

RBI singles by Ohmed Danesh and Dennis Guinn in the eighth and ninth innings respectively closed out the scoring for FSU. Shortstop Jason Stidham had three hits on the day.

Florida State's opening game in the College World Series will be against the Stanford Cardinal Saturday, June 14.