LSU falls to No. 1 Florida in second round of SEC Tournament

LSU falls to No. 1 Florida in second round of SEC Tournament

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HOOVER, AL - Florida freshman right-hander Tommy Mace limited LSU to one earned run in seven innings Wednesday night as the Gators edged the Tigers, 4-3, in the second round of the SEC Tournament at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium.

LSU (34-24) will play at 1 p.m. CT Thursday in an elimination game against the loser of Wednesday night's Arkansas-South Carolina game. Florida (42-15) will play the winner of the Arkansas-South Carolina game at 8 p.m. CT Thursday.

Mace (4-0) worked seven innings and allowed three runs - one earned - on three hits with one walk and four strikeouts, firing 96 pitches.

Florida closer Michael Byrne blanked LSU over the final 1.2 innings to earn his 13th save of the season.

LSU freshman right-hander Ma'Khail Hilliard (9-5) was charged with the loss as he surrendered four runs on seven hits in 4.2 innings with three walks and four strikeouts.

LSU reliever Cam Sanders was brilliant in relief of Hilliard, firing 3.1 scoreless innings and limiting Florida to one hit with no walks and four strikeouts.

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LSU seized a 2-0 lead in the top of the second inning when designated hitter Beau Jordan reached on a throwing error by Florida second baseman Blake Reese and third baseman Jake Slaughter launched a two-run homer, his seventh dinger of the year.

The Tigers extended the lead in the third to 3-0 when rightfielder Antoine Duplantis reached on another Reese error, stole second base and scored on a single by leftfielder Daniel Cabrera.

Florida tied the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the third when shortstop Deacon Liput lined an RBI double, designated hitter Nelson Maldonado produced a run with a groundout and third baseman Jonathan India delivered a run-scoring single.

The Gators took the lead in the fifth against Hilliard on a two-out RBI single by leftfielder Austin Langworthy.