ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - Brian Adkins (Orlando, Fla.) pitched five effective innings and shortstop Darnell Sweeney (Miramar, Fla.) extended his hitting streak to six games as the No. 19 UCF baseball team topped Bethune-Cookman, 8-4, for the eighth-straight victory in the series.
Adkins took control of the Wildcats' lineup early, setting down 12 of the first 13 batters without allowing a hit until the fifth inning. The University High School product surrendered only two runs on three hits to secure his first win of the season.
"Brian did a good job. It was important to get him back on the mound again as he is a command-type pitcher. I think his stuff was much better tonight than this past weekend, so mission accomplished," said UCF head coach Terry Rooney, who sports an unblemished record against the Wildcats.
Junior first baseman D.J. Hicks (Altamonte Springs, Fla.) racked up a trio of RBI to push his season total to 15 with two singles, including a screamer off second basemen Jairo Acevedo's glove to plate Darnell Sweeney (Miramar, Fla.) and Ronnie Richardson (Eagle Lake, Fla.) to get the scoring started for the Knights (7-2) in the first inning.
Second basemen Travis Shreve (Auburn, Wash.) plated his eighth RBI of the season after a single up the middle brought home the hot-hitting Alex Friedrich (Orlando, Fla.) who smacked his sixth double of 2012 to put himself into scoring position.
"Our offense is very good, and I think everyone feels that it is starting to get going. I know I feel that way," Rooney added after his team totaled 10 hits on the night. "At the end of the day we knew our offense would be one of the best in the country and I feel we are now starting to get there."
In the fifth, Junior Nick Carrillo (Glendale, Ariz.) put up his third RBI in two days on a sacrifice fly, while Chris Taladay (Windermere, Fla.) drove in his fifth run of the season with a two-base sacrifice to deep center to score a hustling Richardson in the sixth inning.
The biggest threat of the game by the Wildcats came in the bottom of the seventh. Having already plating two runs in the frame, junior LHP Jimmy Reed (Spokane, Wash.) snuck out of the bases-loaded jam by getting a crucial swinging strikeout to preserve the 8-4 lead.
UCF will continue its busy schedule when it hosts Siena for a weekend tilt with Friday's contest slated for 6:30 p.m., Saturday at 4 and Sunday's finale at 1.
News and Notes:
-The Knights improved to 70-14 all-time against B-CU
-UCF has played nine times on Leap Year, amassing a 7-2 record, including four wins against B-CU
-Four Knights recorded two-hit games, including Richardson, Hicks, Friedrich and James Vasquez
-Friedrich, Sweeney and Richardson have reached base safely in all nine games of 2012
-Adkins notched a four-pitch fourth inning
-Richardson and Sweeney swiped their sixth and seventh stolen bases on the year
-Adkins lost his no-hit bid in the bottom of the fifth on a two-out double by B-CU's Jairo Acevedo