By Jerry Briggs
For the JB Replay
Ryan Slater pitched five shutout innings, BT Riopelle crushed a couple of two-run homers and the host Florida Gators won the NCAA Gainesville Regional title with a 6-0 victory over the Texas Tech Red Raiders.
Slater allowed three hits and walked two but kept the Red Raiders off balance in key moments and off the scoreboard completely, setting the tone for the Gators, who qualified for the Super Regional round of the playoffs.
Riopelle hit a two-run home run in the fourth inning that boosted the Gators into a 3-0 lead. A few minutes later, he added another two-run shot in a three-run fifth. After Riopelle’s fireworks display, Florida was on top 6-0 and cruising.
How the Texas teams have fared
Texas: (41-20) Beat host Miami for the title on Sunday in Coral Gables, Fla.
Texas Tech: (41-23) Lost to host Florida in the title game Monday in Gainesville, Fla.
TCU: (39-22) Scheduled to meet host Arkansas in the finals at Fayetteville on Monday afternoon.
Texas A&M: (38-26) Scheduled to play in California against host Stanford in the title game Monday night.
Dallas Baptist (47-16) Lost to Oral Roberts in the finals Sunday at Stillwater, Okla.
Sam Houston State: (39-25) Eliminated after three games at Baton Rouge, La.