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GATORS SHUTDOWN SOUTH FLORIDA 5-1

Gainesville, Fla. -- Michael Byrne and Alex Faedo combined for 12 innings on the mound with just one run allowed to beat USF 5-1 on Saturday night in the 2017 NCAA Gainesville Regional.

Florida (44-16) advances to the Regional Final on Sunday (7 p.m.) and will face the winner of Sunday's early game between USF (42-18) and Bethune-Cookman (12 p.m.).

The game was tied 1-1 after five innings and both teams kept it deadlocked until the Gators plated four runs in the top of the 12th inning.

Faedo started and allowed one run over seven innings despite having to sit for nearly 50 minutes between pitches due to a lightning delay.

Byrne, who earned the save on Friday night and threw 25 pitches, entered from the bullpen and pitched five scoreless innings with eight strikeouts.

In the 12th inning the game was tied 1-1 when Christian Hicks led off with an infield single. He was replaced by pinch runner Blake Reese on first base.

USF reliever Andrew Perez overshot a pickoff attempt and sent the ball sailing down the right field line and Reese took off on the base paths.

As Reese slid into third, the throw from Bulls' first baseman Joe Genord sailed across the diamond and over the head of the third baseman. Reese got up and sprinted home to give Florida a 2-1 lead.

The scoring drought was over and the Gators added some insurance on a RBI groundout from JJ Schwarz and two-run single from Nelson Maldonado.

Faedo and USF starter Shane McClanahan cruised through the first two innings before mother nature intervened, halting play for 38 minutes due to lightning in the area.

USF replaced McClanahan following the delay and called on righty Ryan Valdes out of the bullpen. Faedo remained in the game following the delay.

After Valdes worked a scoreless third, the Gators got on the board in the fourth. Schwarz drew a one-out walk and moved to second on a groundout from Nelson Maldonado.

Mike Rivera followed with a two-out RBI single to left field to give the Gators a 1-0 lead.

After a shaky third inning following the delay, Faedo worked a scoreless fourth but the Bulls tied the game with a pair of singles. Duke Stunkel's RBI single to left scored Joe Genord from second to get the Bulls on the board.

Faedo settled in after the fifth and retired eight in a row after USF tied the game and both teams went into lockdown mode after the fifth. The two teams combined for 12 scoreless frames before the Gators finally broke the tie.

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