Tyler DuPont pitched 5.1 innings of relief and Ryan Roberson hit the game-winning home run to lead North Florida to an 8-2 victory over USC Upstate Sunday in the final game of a three-game series from Harley Park.
North Florida starting pitcher Matt Vaka allowed one run, two hits and walked two batters in the first inning before being lifted for DuPont after James Fowlkes singled with two outs. DuPont (6-1) then retired the next five Spartans before Erik Samples collected his team-leading 16th double of the season in the third inning.
The Ospreys used back-to-back triples by Nick Karmeris and Garrick Ferguson and an RBI single from Patrick Ervin in the fourth inning to score a pair of runs and take a 2-1 lead.
Daniel Fickas turned in a triple of his own to leadoff the fifth and scored to tie the game when Samples followed with a single up the middle. But Robertson connected for his sixth home run of the season to lead off the sixth to give North Florida the lead for good.
North Florida tacked on five runs in the top of the ninth and Corbin Olmstead induced a game-ending double play in the bottom half to earn his eighth save of the season and preserve the victory.
Upstate starting pitcher Zac Manuppelli allowed three runs and struck out three in 6.2 innings and took the loss.
Jake Beaver finished with three hits to lead Upstate and is hitting .600 over his last four games. Samples added two hits and one RBI and moved into sole possession of 12th place on Upstate’s all-time doubles list with 35.
Upstate plays its final non-conference game of the season Tuesday at 7 p.m. when the Spartans travel to Columbia, S.C., to face South Carolina from Carolina Stadium.