LSU's Daniel Bradshaw
Photo by:Chris Parent, LSU Athletics Student Photographer
Homers Lift Florida to Baseball Sweep
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Published: May 02, 2010, 12:00 AM (CT)
Updated: May 04, 2010, 10:29 PM (CT)
by Bill Franques, Sr. Associate SID

GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Senior centerfielder Matt den Dekker collected five hits and four RBI Sunday to lead sixth-ranked Florida to a 13-6 win over ninth-ranked LSU at McKethan Stadium.

The Gators improved 31-11 overall, 15-6 in the SEC. LSU is 32-13 overall and 11-10 in conference play.

LSU returns to action at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday when the Tigers play host to Southeastern Louisiana in Alex Box Stadium.

"This was tough weekend for us against a great team," said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. "it's hard to win when you're playing from behind as much as we were the whole series. We have to move forward - there's still a lot of baseball left, including three very important conference weekends."

Florida starter Brian Johnson worked 6.1 innings for the win Sunday and helped his own cause with a grand slam homer to highlight a five-run Gators fourth inning.

The Gators grabbed a 2-0 lead in the first inning against LSU right-hander Matty Ott when shortstop Nolan Fontana doubled and den Dekker launched his seventh homer of the season.

Florida extended the lead to 5-0 in the third on a three-run homer by third baseman Austin Maddox, his 13th dinger of the year.

LSU responded with a run in the fourth on back-to-back doubles by centerfielder Leon Landry and leftfielder Alex Edward.

The Gators erupted for five runs in the bottom of the fourth, as the rally was highlighted Johnson's grand slam - his second homer of the season -- off of LSU reliever Daniel Bradshaw.

Ott (1-2), making his first career start, was charged with the loss as he allowed nine runs on eight hits in 3.2 innings with two walks and three strikeouts.

Johnson improved to 4-2 on the year as  he limited the Tigers to two earned runs on nine hits in 6.1 innings with no walks and four strikeouts.

The Tigers narrowed the gap to 10-6 in the eighth inning as rightfielder Mikie Mahtook's two-run single highlighted the rally, but the Gators responded with three runs in the bottom of the frame. den Dekker contributed an RBI single and first baseman Preston Tucker added a run-scoring double to spark the outburst.

 

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