Matt Pearce threw a complete-game eight-inning shutout to lead Polk State to a 8-0 win over Gulf Coast State College tonight in the NJCAA Gulf District/FCSAA state baseball tournament at Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland.
Pearce allowed five hits and walked one while striking out nine.
"Matt was phenomenal tonight," said head coach Al Corbeil. "Gulf Coast has a really good ball club, but Matt was on tonight, and when he's on I feel like we have the best pitcher in the state. He moved his fastball around exceptionally well and his off-speed stuff was excellent. For him to come out and give us that kind of an outing was huge."
The Eagles staked him to a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the third when Cody DeNoyelles (2-for-5, two RBI, two runs) and Casey Schroeder (3-for-5, two RBI, one run) hit back-to-back RBI singles, and JD Osborne (1-for-5, two RBI) drove in a run on a ground out.
Polk State added five more runs in the bottom of the eighth.
Polk State plays Central Florida Monday at 4 p.m. at Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland.