AIKEN, SC - Carson King threw his second-straight gem as Florida Southern College baseball routed USC Aiken, 9-1, on Sunday afternoon at Roberto Hernandez Stadium. The No. 5 Moccasins (5-2) pounded out 13 hits to take two of three games from the Pacers (7-3) over the weekend. King struck out 10 and allowed just one run on two hits in six innings, and Zach Diewert and Cody Duke each homered as the Mocs tallied five extra-base hits on the afternoon.
Four different players had at least two hits, and Diewert drove in three runs in the victory while Florida Southern's pitchers punched out 14 USC Aiken batters. Duke, Alan Burnsed, and Jacob Teter drove in two runs each, and Ricky Gonzalez had a game-high three hits.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- Florida Southern looked as if it might get off to a fast start when Dylan Costa led off the top of the first with a single, advanced to second on a groundout, and moved to third on Teter's single to left, but Diewert would foul out to first with two outs to end the scoring threat. USC Aiken used a leadoff walk, a wild pitch, and a ground out to move a runner to third with one out in the bottom half of the inning, but King induced a foul popup to Teter and struck out the final batter to keep the game scoreless.
- After a scoreless top half of the second inning, the Pacers plated the game's first run when Blake Jenkins knocked a one-out single to left and came around to scored on an RBI groundout following a pair of walks. But King once again got himself out of trouble by forcing a harmless popup to short to limit the damage to just one run.
- King would settle in from that point on, recording eight strikeouts over the next four innings while the Moccasins scored four runs. Southern plated its first runs of the day in the top of the fifth when Teter laced a one-out double to left to score Zach Scott and Pablo Cabrera. Diewert followed up with a one-run single and the Mocs led 3-1 after the fifth.
- Burnsed added another run in the seventh when Gonzalez scored on an RBI single, while Duke blasted a two-run homer to left in the eighth and Burnsed plated another run to make it 7-1 after eight full innings. Diewert added two insurance runs on a home run in the top of the ninth, his second of the season, to make the final 9-1.
- King (2-0) won his second straight start while Thomas Spinelli struck out three in two scoreless innings in relief. Cole Crowder pitched the bottom of the ninth, allowing one hit while striking out one.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
- Florida Southern improved to 6-3 all-time against USC Aiken and evened its record to 3-3 when facing the Pacers on the road.
- King has allowed just one run in 10 innings this year (0.90 ERA) and has recorded 16 strikeouts. The Moccasin bullpen has now allowed just eight runs in 27.2 innings of work while recording 31 strikeouts this season.
- Diewert has hit safely in all seven games this season. He is batting .444 this year, tied with Cabrera for the team-high. He is also tied with Cabrera for a team-best 12 hits, tied with Duke for the team lead in home runs (2), and is the team leader in RBI (8). Along with Cabrera, Teter, and Isaiah Cullum, Diewert is one of four Moccasins who have reached base safely in all seven games so far.
- The Mocs hit a combined .269 over the weekend with seven extra-base hits while holding USC Aiken to a batting average of just .224 and three extra-base hits. Florida Southern's pitchers recorded 35 strikeouts over the weekend with a combined ERA of 2.77
- The Moccasins will face Merrimack at home on Feb. 21 before opening Sunshine State Conference action next weekend at home against Barry (Feb. 22-23).