May 15, 2004
Florida Atlantic University played its final games at FAU Stadium this season on Saturday afternoon. The team managed a split with Georgia State University as FAU came out with a 4-3 victory in game one before falling 9-4 in the second game. Rusty Brown finished the afternoon with four hits and three RBI to lead FAU to a 38-14, 17-10 A-Sun record. The Panthers come out of the weekend with an 18-32, 11-16 A-Sun record.
Down 3-2 in the fourth inning of game one, Derek Hutton led off the bottom of the fourth with a walk off of GSU starting pitcher Ben Rulon. After Jeff Fiorentino was hit by a pitch and Rulon allowed the runners to advance on a wild pitch, Rob Horst pushed across the tying run with a ground out to the shortstop. With two outs in the inning, Rusty Brown (N. Fort Myers, FL) lined a ball through the left side to give Florida Atlantic the go ahead run and the 4-3 win.
Rulon (2-11) struck out five in 3 2/3 innings and gave up four runs before he gave way to Kenny Camp. Camp finished out the final 2 1/3 innings and did not allow an FAU hit as he struck out three.
Matt O'Brien (10-3) held the Panthers to three runs on six hits in five innings as he picked up his team-leading 10th victory. Brandon Kloess and Allen Knight worked an inning each out of the bullpen. Both players struck out one and Knight picked up his third save of the season.
FAU (38-14, 17-10 A-Sun) went into the sixth inning of game two with a 4-3 lead before the Panthers (18-32, 11-16 A-Sun) scored six runs in the frame to avoid the sweep. Relief pitcher Craig Hughes (2-2) gave up two base hits to Brian Williams and Cole Reissig as GSU tied the game at four. After recording an out, Hughes walked the go-ahead run Brian Newman. Allen Knight made his second appearance of the day but could not end the Georgia State threat as he loaded the bases. Rusty Bennett then recorded the winning RBI as he picked up the team's sixth walk. Ryan Sterling increased the lead to five with a grand slam for the 9-4 win.
Romas Hicks improved his record to 4-3 after he threw six innings and struck out two while allowing four runs on nine hits.
FAU plays its final non-conference game of the season when it travels to Miami on Wednesday for a 7 pm meeting with the Hurricanes. Freshman Mike Crotta will take the mound for Florida Atlantic as he makes his 12th start of the season.