Carson Fulmer matched his career-best with eight strikeouts on Friday night.
May 9, 2014
Gainesville, Fla. - Carson Fulmer put No. 18 Vanderbilt on his back Friday night in his home state, shutting out No. 4 Florida 3-0 at McKethan Stadium to even the series.
Fulmer was dominant in his first career complete game shutout, scattering four hits and matching a career-best with eight strikeouts. The Gators (34-17, 19-7) never threatened the sophomore, not getting a runner to second base until two outs in the ninth when Fulmer fielded a chopper and threw the ball wide to first base. The Commodores' (37-14, 15-11) defense picked him up early, after a leadoff walk to start the game the defense turned two and Fulmer struck out Florida's Harrison Bader to end the inning. After a single in the second inning, the right-hander settled in to retire 12 straight Gators before a two-out single in the sixth snapped the streak.
The Dores' defense rose to the occasion again in the eighth inning when Buddy Reed smashed a one-hopper to the right of shortstop Vince Conde, who gloved the hot shot and flipped it to second baseman Dansby Swanson who made the turn and threw out Reed at first to end the inning. Back out for the ninth, Fulmer quickly retired the first two Gators before Richie Martin reached on an infield single and advanced to second on Fulmer's throwing error. But with a full count and two outs, Fulmer had plenty in the tank to blow a fastball by Bader to end the game.
The Vandy offense finally broke through in the fifth inning to score three runs after leaving eight runners on base through the first four frames. Bryan Reynolds walked to lead off the inning and came around to score when Conde hit into a fielder's choice at second base. The Gators' attempt to turn the groundout into a double play led to the Dores' second run on Martin's throwing error. Karl Ellison capped the rally with a well-executed safety squeeze bunt up the first base line that scored Conde from third.
Fulmer improved to a perfect 4-0 in four starts for the Dores and has yet to allow a run over his 28 innings as a starter. His shutout is the first for a Commodore since Kevin Ziomek blanked Illinois-Chicago last March. Fulmer joins Walker Buehler as the two Dores to throw complete games this season.
Zander Wiel led the way for the Commodores with three hits in the win with Conde and Rhett Wiseman chipping in two hits each.
Dane Dunning took the loss for Florida allowing one run on two walks in one inning of relief work. Gators' starter Danny Young lasted just three-plus innings allowing five hits.
The Commodores and Gators decide the series tomorrow at 11 a.m. CT on Fox SportsNet. Sophomore Tyler Ferguson gets the ball against Florida right-hander Karsten Whitson.