Sports briefs: Duke routs Florida State in ACC baseball tournament

Published 12:00 am Thursday, May 27, 2021

Associated Press

CHARLOTTE — Michael Rothenberg hit his second career grand slam in a five-run first inning and No. 9 seed Duke beat fifth-seeded Florida State 12-1 on Wednesday in the ACC Tournament for its ninth straight victory.

Duke (30-20) faces Miami in a pool-play game today and Florida State (29-23) plays the Hurricanes on Friday.

Rothenberg tripled to start the third before scoring on Graham Pauley’s single for a 6-0 lead. Erikson Nichols added a RBI single in a three-run fifth and a two-run homer in a three-run ninth.

Rothenberg also hit a grand slam in the 2019 ACC Tournament against Notre Dame.

Duke starter Billy Seidl (4-0) struck out six and gave up just three hits in 3 1/3 innings. Florida State starter Bryce Hubbart (6-5) walked two and allowed four runs without recording an out in the first.

Jared Miller had a solo home run and an RBI triple to help top-seeded Notre Dame beat No. 12 seed Virginia Tech 8-0. Notre Dame (31-10) takes on Virginia on Friday for a spot in the semifinals. Virginia Tech (27-26) had its season come to an end.

Brooks Coetzee also had two RBIs for Notre Dame — on a single in the seventh and a sacrifice fly in the ninth. Zack Prajzner went 4 for 4 with an RBI single in the ninth.

Notre Dame starter Will Mercer (3-2) retired 10 batters in a row, and only allowed three hits in five innings. Jaison Heard (3-4) was one of eight pitchers used by Virginia Tech. Tanner Thomas hit a double in the ninth for Virginia Tech’s only extra-base hit.

Mickelson sets his focus on Colonial after historic PGA win

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Phil Mickelson allowed himself to get distracted for a couple of days after his victory at the PGA Championship, taking some time to relish the historic achievement of becoming the oldest player to win a major.

“Because when I’m doing it, I’m not fully aware because I’m so in the moment,” Mickelson said Wednesday.

Now Lefty is trying to get his focus back on playing. Only four days after raising the Wanamaker Trophy,  the 50-year-old is set to tee off today in the first round of the Charles Schwab Challenge at Colonial.

“That’s going to be the biggest challenge for me because I kind of went from keeping my mind off of all the distractions and the noise during the week of the PGA to really letting it come in the last two days, enjoy it,” he said. “And really it hit me in the last two days what just happened.”

The two-time Colonial champion (2000 and 2008) said it never crossed his mind to skip the trip to Hogan’s Alley. This is his last scheduled tournament before his hometown U.S. Open next month at Torrey Pines. “I feel like now that I’m playing well, gosh, I want to play,” he said.

Trevor Lawrence, Tim Tebow meshing as teammates so far

Trevor Lawrence is excited to have Tim Tebow as a teammate.

The Jacksonville Jaguars signed Tebow last week, giving the former Florida star and 2007 Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback an opportunity to revive his pro career as a tight end catching passes from their rookie No. 1 overall pick.

“He looks great,” Lawrence said on the AP Pro Football Podcast. “He’s just a guy that you want to be around. Character is awesome. Had a few conversations with him and I can already tell, and just a hard worker. No one is going to work harder than him. Those are the kind of guys you want in your locker room.”

The 33-year-old Tebow is returning to the NFL after playing baseball the past five years (2016-20) in the New York Mets’ organization. He’s reuniting with Urban Meyer, his college coach, and joining Lawrence following the 21-year-old’s standout career at Clemson.