Florida wins 1st national title in program history

Posted at 7:03 PM, Jun 28, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-28 20:03:16-04

The baseball program at the University of Florida has been in action for 103 years.  But on Tuesday night, the Gators claimed their first national championship in program history.

Florida is no stranger to Omaha, having been at the College World Series 11 times, including six of the last eight seasons.  And this was the Gators' third appearance in the CWS championship series.

"I don't really look at it as the first one," said Florida's head coach, Kevin O'Sullivan. "I look at it as the first one that I though was inevitable it was going to happen."

Florida's 11 CWS appearances was the most by any school before eventually winning a national championship.

"It's unbelievable right now, I'm at a loss for words," said Michael Byrne, Florida's sophomore closer. "Glad we can get it for Sully, he's been working at it for a couple years and it's incredible that we got it."

And pitching was the key for Florida during this College World Series.  In fact, the Gators' team batting percentage of .222 was the lowest by a national champion in 45 years.  

But if the tournament's Most Outstanding Player was any indication, UF's cold bats didn't mean much.  The Gators' ace, Alex Faedo, took home the tournament's MOP award along with the national title.

"It's taken Gators baseball way too long and hopefully this is the start of something new, a legacy for Coach Sully," said Faedo.