No. 12 UCF Walks off Against Jacksonville


Danny Morales / Valencia Voice

The Knights improve to 24-10 on the season and 9-1 in one-run games.

ORLANDO, Fla. — James Vasquez’s bases-loaded single up the middle in the bottom of the ninth inning helped the No. 12 UCF Knights to a 6-5 walk-off win against the Jacksonville Dolphins on Tuesday night in front of 1,511 at Jay Bergman Field.

With the win, the Knights improve to 9-1 on the season in games decided by one run.

“I just wanted to put the ball in play and stay up the middle because the ball was running away so I just told myself to stay up the middle,” Vasquez said. “[I] put a good swing on it [and] I got the result I wanted.”

The Dolphins (15-17) jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the first inning after leadoff hitter Nathan Koslowski opened up the game with a triple down the right field line.

Angelo Amendolare reached base on a walk before Austin Hays’ RBI groundout to shortstop scored Koslowski from third base. Amendolare would score on a throwing error committed by Knights third baseman Tommy Williams for the second run of the inning.

UCF (24-10) answered Jacksonville’s two-run first inning by putting up three runs to take a 3-2 lead after one inning of play.

The Dolphins chased Knights starting pitcher Ryan Meyer out of the game in the fifth inning after the first three batters reached base. The Dolphins scored three runs in the inning to take a 5-3 lead.

UCF again answered Jacksonville’s scoring effort by plating two more runs to tie the game up at five each.

Meyer earned a no-decision in the game by allowing five runs — one earned — in four innings of work while walking four batters and striking out three.

Dylan Moore started the Knights’ rally in the bottom of the ninth inning with a single through the left side. The Dolphins then opted to walk Derrick Salberg to put runners on first and second before Williams drew a walk to load the bases for Vasquez.

UCF’s bullpen held Jacksonville scoreless in five innings while scattering just five hits in relief.

“It was a team win, there’s no question,” UCF head coach Terry Rooney said. “It was a team win. A lot of guys contributed on the mound and we got some clutch hits when we needed it. We won it late. It shows a lot of heart. It shows a lot competitiveness.”

The Knights return to action for a three-game series at Jay Bergman Field against the University of Connecticut beginning on Friday. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m.