May 20, 2005
MACON, Ga. - Mercer used a four-run second inning and held off UCF long enough before heavy rain and lightning hit the Macon area as the host Bears defeated the Golden Knights 7-5 in 5.5 innings of play Friday. UCF trailed 7-3 entering the sixth inning and scored twice in the top of the sixth before the inclement weather hit to suspend play. After nearly a two hour and 30 minute delay, play was called and Mercer was awarded the victory.
The rain-shortened loss overshadowed a historic day by Dee Brown. The senior left fielder became UCF's career leader in hits and RBI by going 3-for-3 with two home runs and four RBI. Brown tied the single-season home run record at UCF with two jacks, sending his season total to 17.
On one swing, Brown vaulted himself into the top spot in UCF's career records for hits and RBI as the senior drilled a two-run home run to center to hand the Golden Knights a 2-0 lead in the first. The hit was Brown's 289th of his career, equaling the school record held by Tim Foskett for 22 seasons (1980-83). Brown also drove in RBI number 220 and 221, joining Vince Zawaski (1985-88) for top honors in UCF history.
Mercer scored four runs in the second, including a two-run single by Brandon Reichert to give the Bears a 4-2 lead.
Mercer scored an unearned run in the third on a RBI-double by Mark Cimini to push the lead to 5-2.
Brown's home run heroics continued in the fourth as he established a new career record for hits and RBI at UCF with his solo homer to bring UCF to within two at 5-3. The home run was Brown's 290th hit of his career, the 222nd RBI and his 17th home run of the season.
The 17 home runs tie Brown with Dustin Brisson (1999) for the UCF single-season record. The multi-home run game was Brown's fifth of the season as he moved into sole possession of sixth place in the UCF career record books with 25 home runs.
Mercer added to its lead in the fifth with two runs to make the score 7-3.
Brown's big day continued in the sixth with a RBI-single - his fourth RBI and third hit of the game - to bring UCF back to within three at 7-4. Later in the inning, Brown came around to score on a wild pitch to close the gap to 7-5.
UCF could not pull any closer as play was suspended in the bottom of the sixth inning.
With the series tied at one, the two teams are scheduled to play the rubber game of the series Saturday at noon. UCF must win tomorrow to secure the No. 2 seed in next week's Atlantic Sun Tournament. The Golden Knights could also clinch the No. 2 seed if Georgia State wins one game vs. Florida Atlantic either tonight or Saturday.
Game Notes: UCF head coach Jay Bergman was ejected in the bottom of the fifth inning ... Bergman must sit out Saturday's regular season finale due to A-Sun regulations ... Dee Brown and John-Michael Howell are the top home run hitting duo in single-season history at UCF with 32 home runs ... the two surpassed Dustin Brisson (17 HR) and Matt Bowser (13 HR), who combined to hit 30 homers in 1999.