Oregon’s postseason came to a close Sunday night after the Ducks suffered a 5-3 loss to No. 1 seed and 10th-ranked Florida State in game six of the Norwich Regional.
The Ducks end their season with a record of 40-24, while the Seminoles (45-17), who rolled through the regional with a record of 3-0, move on to play the winner of the Louisville Regional in the Super Regionals next weekend.
Louisville and Vanderbilt play Monday in a final game seven to decide the regional winner.
Oregon was up for elimination earlier in the day, but prolonged its season with a 4-3 victory over 17th-ranked and No. 2 seed Connecticut in game five of the regional.
Florida State broke the game wide open in the bottom of the third, plastering four runs on the scoreboard and taking a lead Oregon could never catch. Sherman Johnson launched a two-run homer to right center on an 0-0 count off UO starter Alex Keudell to start the scoring, and Mike McGee continued the inning with a double to center.
McGee scored the Seminoles third run, when Stephen Cardulo drove a two-out double to center. Stuart Tapley then scored Cardulo knocking a RBI single up the middle as FSU took a 4-0 advantage. Keudell surrendered a single to Jayce Boyd and his night was over in favor of Christian Jones, as the left-hander took over with runners on the corners and two outs on the board. Jones struck out Devon Travis looking to escape the inning.
Keudell (5-6) took the loss after tossing 4 and 2/3 innings, and allowing four runs on six hits and one walk while striking out two.
Oregon answered back immediately nearly erasing a four-run deficit and putting the pressure on Florida State. Steven Packard was issued a one-out walk, and an error in right field on a dropped fly ball allowed Jett Hart to reach. KC Serna then loaded the bases with a single to left.
With the bases loaded, FSU made a move and put right-hander Daniel Bennett on the mound to replace starter John Gast.
Pulfer put a ball in play that Cardulo booted at shortstop, allowing Packard and Hart to score. With Pulfer on first and Serna on third, Pulfer took off for second and got caught up in a run down, allowing Serna to break for home and score the Ducks’ third run easily.
Gast (8-3) lasted three and 1/3 innings, allowing three unearned runs on five hits and two walks while striking out three.
But after closing 4-3, Tyler Holt gave the Seminoles a two-run cushion with a one-put solo home run off Jones in the bottom of the fourth.
Jones pitched a career best four innings, allowing just one run on one hits while dealing a career-best four strikeouts.
Bennett (4-1) was credited with the win after a pitching a career-high four and 1/3 innings shit out innings and dealing five strikeouts. He held the Ducks to one hit and issued just one walk.
Geoff Parker retired the final out of the eighth for FSU, and the Seminoles brought McGee out of left field to close. He issued Pulfer a leadoff walk, but retired the side to earn his 11th save of the season.
Oregon stayed alive in the regional after a 4-3 victory over host and No. 2 seed Connecticut in Sunday afternoon’s game. The Ducks ‘win eliminated the Huskies (48-16) from postseason play.
KC Serna, Steven Packard, Justin LaTempa were named to the Norwich Regional all-tournament team.
The two clubs had squared off on Friday night, with Oregon moving on to the winner bracket with a 5-3 victory.
The Ducks were up for elimination after a 6-4 loss to Florida State on Saturday night in game four.
Notes: Oregon was 9-6 against ranked teams in 2010…head coach George Horton is 1-5 against the Seminoles all-time and 0-3 in the postseason…this was Oregon’s first trip to the postseason since 1964…head coach George Horton is now 59-30 all-time in the postseason…the Ducks advanced to the regional after just their second season of reinstatement.