UCLA Edges Florida State, 2-1, to Reach Regional Final
AUBURN, Ala. – Carson Yates drilled a solo home run to snap a 1-1 tie in the top of the ninth inning, leading the No. 2-seed UCLA baseball team past No. 3-seed Florida State, 2-1, in an elimination game at Plainsman Park on Sunday afternoon.
Yates' home run, his third in as many days, came on a 2-and-2 count to lead off the ninth inning.
Sunday afternoon's victory propelled UCLA (40-23) into Sunday evening's contest against top-seeded Auburn (39-19) in the double-elimination format NCAA Regional. The Bruins and Auburn are scheduled to face off again on Sunday at 4 p.m. PT (6 p.m. CT).
Bruins' closer Alonzo Tredwell picked up the victory, holding the Seminoles scoreless over the final two innings of the game.
Redshirt sophomore right-hander Kelly Austin drew the start for UCLA, limiting Florida State (34-25) to one run and six hits through six innings. Austin registered six strikeouts and no walks.
T9 | HAVE A WEEKEND, CARSON YATES!
Carson's solo shot, his third HR of the regional, gives the Bruins the ninth-inning lead.
UCLA 2, FSU 1
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— UCLA Baseball (@UCLABaseball) June 5, 2022
Florida State reliever Davis Hare (1-4) absorbed the loss, allowing one run and three hits in 1.1 innings. Left-hander Jonah Scolaro limited the Bruins to one run and five hits in 6.1 innings as the Seminoles' starting pitcher. Scolaro totaled nine strikeouts and two walks for Florida State (34-25), making his 28th appearance and second start of the season.
"I just think Kelly Austin was the story," UCLA head coach John Savage said. "He stepped up. He's been stepping up all season in a lot of different roles. He fought a really good Florida State team who was very dangerous in this ballpark. You have to tip your hat. He kept us in the ball game. And Kyle [Karros] comes up with a big hit in the seventh, and then Carson [Yates] follows with a big hit in the ninth. It wasn't easy. It was a good ballgame. At the end of the day, we pitched well and we put up enough zeroes."
All three runs in Sunday afternoon's contest were the result of solo home runs. Florida State got on the board, 1-0, with Jaime Ferrer's solo blast to left field with one out in the bottom of the sixth inning.
UCLA's Kyle Karros answered immediately in the top of the seventh, leading off the inning with a home run to left-center field on the first pitch of the at-bat. Karros' game-tying blast marked his sixth home run of the season.
In order for the Bruins to win the NCAA Regional (double-elimination format), UCLA must defeat Auburn on Sunday evening to force a winner-take-all contest on Monday night. Auburn, with wins on Friday and Saturday, can advance to the NCAA Super Regional round with just one victory on Sunday night.
With a 40-23 record, the Bruins have recorded at least 40 victories for the sixth season in the past 13 years (previous 40-win seasons under Coach Savage's tenure as head coach took place in 2010, 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2019).