ON AIR NOW

LISTEN NOW

Weather

Sponsored By: Two Men and a Truck
cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
86°
Mostly Sunny
H 94° L 76°
  • cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
    86°
    Current Conditions
    Mostly Sunny. H 94° L 76°
  • clear-day Created with Sketch.
    90°
    Evening
    Mostly Sunny. H 94° L 76°
  • cloudy-day Created with Sketch.
    77°
    Morning
    Partly Cloudy. H 93° L 75°
LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest top stories

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest traffic report

00:00 | 00:00

LISTEN
PAUSE
ERROR

The latest forecast

00:00 | 00:00

Zack Powers hits two grand slams, lifts Florida to 16-5 win over Duke

For Zack Powers, hitting two grand slams Sunday was just a bonus. After missing all of 2012 with a torn labrum in his right shoulder, he was happy to simply be back on the field.

Making his first career start at first base, Powers belted two grand slams and knocked in nine runs as a late-inning offensive outburst helped Florida defeat Duke 16-5 in the finale of the season-opening series at McKethan Stadium.

“It’s great to have a good game like this, but it’s great to actually be back and playing,” Powers said. “It’s special just to get out on the field and start playing baseball.”

Powers had just seven RBIs in his career before coming up one shy of a Florida record with nine Sunday. His home runs were the first two of his career.

Not since Preston Tucker in 2009 has Florida had a player hit multiple grand slams in a game. Although the Gators smacked an NCAA-best 75 home runs last season, none of them were grand slams. UF’s last grand slam before Sunday was during the 2011 Southeastern Conference Tournament.

“I was very happy for Zack,” coach Kevin O’Sullivan said. “I’m just pleased that he’s healthy and contributing like we always knew he could.”

Before Powers’ bombs pushed the final margin to 11, his sacrifice fly to deep center with the bases loaded in the sixth inning tied the score at 3.

“I did think I got all of that one,” Powers said of narrowly missing a third grand slam. “But it’s great just to get an RBI out of it.”

Stepping to the plate in the seventh with the bases loaded and UF leading 6-3, Powers said he was looking for a single to extend UF’s lead. Instead, he found a 2-2 fastball he liked and pounded it over the right-field fence.

When Powers went up to the plate with the bases loaded and UF ahead by seven in the eighth, he took a different approach.

“The second time up, I kind of got greedy and wanted to go for it,” Powers said.

After fouling off the first 3-2 offering, Powers found a fastball he could handle and launched a towering fly ball to right field.

Duke’s Jeff Kremer slowly backpedalled and appeared as if he might have a play on the ball, but his leaping effort at the wall came up a few feet short.

Powers’ offensive explosion headlined a late resurgence for UF’s offense, which broke open a close game by pounding out 14 runs on 11 hits in Sunday’s final three innings. The Gators notched only nine runs on 14 hits in the series’ first 22 frames.

“We needed an inning like that,” O’Sullivan said. “We were kind of scraping by all weekend.”

For his part in the turnaround, Powers gets a few “good game” accolades from his teammates and one other reward.

“I get extra food whenever we go through the line after the game,” Powers said.

The Gators won two out of three games in the season-opening series for both teams. UF’s next game is Tuesday night at Central Florida.

Read More
VIEW COMMENTS

There are no comments yet. Be the first to post your thoughts. or Register.

The Latest News Headlines

  • UPDATE: JSO says Waverly was found under a motel stairway by a maintenance worker on Sunday. ---------- The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office is asking you to keep an eye out for a missing elderly man, diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease.   JSO tells us Waverly Northington Jr., 66, left his home in the 8200 block of Halls Hammock Court on Friday morning, between the hours of 12:00 am and 2:45 am.   Police say they've conducted an extensive search, but haven't been able to find him.  We're told Northington doesn't have a vehicle, so he's believed to be on foot.   Northington is described as a black male, 5'9'', 130 pounds, with gray hair and brown eyes. He was last seen wearing all white clothing with white shoes.   If you know where he is, or even if you've spotted him somewhere today, you're urged to contact the Sheriff's Office at (904) 630-0500.
  • Three teens who overpowered staff at a juvenile detention center in Jacksonville last week, have been caught by police. Justin Silva, Luther Davis and Derek Browley were found together on Old Kings Road shortly after 10 a.m. Saturday. They had been on the run since escaping from the Jacksonville Youth Academy, which is operated by G4S Youth Services, on June 18.  The president and CEO of G4S Youth Services told WOKV the boys, ranging in age from 15 to 16 years old, ambushed a youth care worker, stole keys to the facility and escaped over a high fence. Police described the attempt as a coordinated plan.  WOKV will continue to update this story as more information is released.  
  • A Memphis, Tennessee, woman turned the tables on a suspect who twice pointed a gun at her during an attempted robbery, police say. >> Read more trending news According to a police report, the woman was pumping gas Wednesday evening when an unknown man approached her. The suspect put a gun into her side and demanded her money and car keys, the report said. The woman told police she pushed the gun away and turned to face the suspect. Police said the man then pointed his gun at the victim’s chest, but she punched him in the face, grabbed the gun and hit the suspect in the face with it four times. A second suspect then rushed toward the woman, and she hit him in the face with the gun one time, according to police. The two suspects ran away, and no arrests have been made at this time, police said.
  • Responding to concerns about personal security for lawmakers after last week’s gun attack at a Congressional baseball practice, U.S. House leaders are moving to provide extra money to members for protection back home, as well as new funding to bolster the work of police and security officials on Capitol Hill. Under a plan approved by a House spending subcommittee on Friday, the Congress would provide an extra $7.5 million next year to the Capitol Police for an “increased security posture” around the Capitol, along with $5 million to the House Sergeant at Arms to help with security for lawmakers back in their districts. “We are taking a new fresh look at security,” said Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-KS), the Chairman of subcommittee that deals with funding for the Legislative Branch. Our FY18 Legislative Branch funding bill increases efficiency & transparency in Congress, enhances security for Members & our constituents. pic.twitter.com/FI36tF2XeH — Rep. Kevin Yoder (@RepKevinYoder) June 22, 2017 “The tragic events of June 14 weigh heavily on these deliberations,” said Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ), the Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, which could vote on the extra money as early as this next week. Also being put into motion is a separate plan to funnel an extra $25,000 to each member of the House – about $11 million in all – to help them increase security back in their districts. “The scariest part for us is there used to be this impression by the public that we all had security everywhere we went,” said Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH). “Now, everyone knows that isn’t the case,” Ryan added, as he lent his support to the extra funding for security as well. The money in this budget bill would not take effect until the new fiscal year – which starts October 1 – so, House leaders are ready to okay extra money immediately for members worried about security back in their districts. Roll Call newspaper reported that could be approved in coming days by the House Administration Committee. Yoder said Congressional leaders are also waiting to see if money raised in campaign contributions for House elections could be put to use for security as well. “Pending an FEC (Federal Election Commission) decision, we’re also looking at whether campaign funds could be used to continue to support security upgrades at personal residences,” Yoder added.

The Latest News Videos