Knights Missed A-Sun Tournament

OF Dee Brown

ORLANDO – UCF's two-year reign as Atlantic Sun Champions came to an end Saturday as the Golden Knights dropped a doubleheader to Jacksonville, eliminating the Golden Knights from the 2003 Atlantic Sun Tournament and ending their season. Jacksonville won game one of 3-1 and secured the sweep and a spot in the A-Sun Tournament with a 7-4 win in the second game.

UCF ended the season 31-25 overall and 14-16 in the conference. UCF had missed the A-Sun Tournament just once in its history, coming in 1994. The Golden Knights ended the 1994 campaign 29-26 and 8-10 in the conference.

In game one of the doubleheader, JU freshman left-handed pitcher Donald Brickle (3-3) tossed a gem in limiting the Golden Knights to one run on six hits for the complete game victory. Brickle fanned five and did not allow a walk for the Dolphins.

Gordie Gronkowski led the Dolphins by going 3-for-4 with a home run in the game one victory.

Drew Butera singled home Ryan Bear in the UCF seventh to spoil the shutout. Mark Michael (7-6) allowed three runs on 10 hits with eight strikeouts in a losing effort for UCF.

In game two, JU sprinted out to a 5-1 lead before the game was halted 55 minutes in the top of the third inning due to lightning in the area. The Dolphins added a run in the fourth to take a 6-1 lead before UCF attempted a comeback.

The Golden Knights plated one run in fifth and two in the sixth to close the deficit to 6-4. In the sixth, Dee Brown and Rich Wallace delivered two-out, RBI-singles to bring UCF to within two.

JU added a run in the seventh and Josh Deel pitched the final 2.0 innings to record his second save of the season.

Kragt ended the second game 2-for-4 with two runs scored for the Golden Knights.

JU starter Darren Truty pitched five innings to earn the win. Truty fanned three to improve to 5-5 on the season.

UCF starter Matt Fox (3-4) yielded five runs on seven hits in 2.1 innings in a losing effort.
 


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