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Monday, Jun 18, 2018
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UF gets No. 2 baseball seed; FSU, UM also will host

— The University of Florida baseball team earned the No. 2 overall national seed and will host one of 16 regionals this weekend.

The Gators (40-21) open at 7 p.m. Friday against College of Charleston. North Carolina and Long Beach State also are in the Gainesville Regional and meet at 1 p.m. Friday.

Florida will be opposite Miami (Coral Gables regional), setting up a possible Florida-Miami super regional matchup in Gainesville if both teams advance this weekend.

UF is a national seed for the fifth time under Kevin O’Sullivan since 2009, which leads the nation.

O’Sullivan said he wasn’t bothered by the fact that Miami was bracketed so it would face the Gators in the super regionals if both advance.

“There’s going to be no pairing with that regional with this regional if we don’t take care of our business here,” O’Sullivan said. “I think that’s a discussion you have down the road. Right now all I’m worried about is our regional, to be honest with you. I told that to our players, too.

“Hey, listen, you get to Omaha (for the College World Series), it’s not going to be easy. It doesn’t matter. There’s no easy road. I mean, you’ve got to play really good teams.’’

Miami is in the NCAA tournament field for the 42nd straight year, extending its own record.

The Hurricanes (41-17) open against Bethune- Cookman at 7 p.m. Friday. Columbia takes on Texas Tech in the opener at 2 p.m. Friday.

Miami is 1-1 against Bethune-Cookman this season.

Florida State, which earned the No. 5 national seed, is in the field for the 37th season in a row, second all-time.

The Seminoles (43-15) open against Georgia Southern at 6 p.m. Friday. Alabama faces Kennesaw State at noon in Friday’s opener.

This marks the 31st time FSU will host a regional in the 64-team tournament. As one of eight national seeds, the Seminoles would host a super regional if they win their regional.

The winner in Tallahassee advances to face the winner in Louisville, Ky.

Oregon State was made the top seed over SEC regular-season champion Florida and a Virginia team that’s been one of the most consistent in the nation but failed to win an ACC title.

“I thought if you took Florida and Oregon State and Virginia, you could find a reason for any of them to be the (No. 1) seed,” Beavers coach Pat Casey said. “When it came down to the fact neither Florida or Virginia were automatic qualifiers, I thought that might swing it our way.”

The other five national seeds, in order, are: Indiana, FSU, Louisiana-Lafayette, TCU and LSU.

Three teams with losing records are in after winning conference tournament titles: Youngstown State (16-36), Siena (25-31) and Bethune-Cookman (26-31).

UCLA (25-30-1) will not get a chance to defend its national title. The Bruins didn’t make the tournament for the first time since 2009 after finishing ninth in the Pac-12 in an injury-plagued season.

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