Jordan McPherson / SEC Country
Florida pitcher Alex Faedo was dominant in Florida's 3-0 win over TCU to begin College World Series play on Sunday.

Florida baseball opens College World Series on a strong note

Welcome to another installment of Good Morning, Gators, SEC Country’s daily morning column covering Florida athletics with Florida beat writer Jordan McPherson. Here’s a look at what you might have missed over the weekend.

Big win for baseball

The No. 3-seed Florida baseball team opened College World Series play with a 3-0 win over No. 6 national seed Texas Christian on Sunday night. The Gators will now advance to the winner’s bracket and face Louisville at 7 p.m. ET on Tuesday. Ace Alex Faedo led the way with 11 strikeouts over 7 shutout innings.

Teddy Cahill of Baseball America called Faedo’s performance a “masterpiece on the mound.”’s Aaron Fitt said it was “the best start of his excellent junior year.”

More baseball notes

Sophomore outfielder Nelson Maldonado injured his right ankle in the fifth inning on Sunday, but expects to be ready to play against Louisville.

The Gators are embracing the potential for close games, according to the Omaha World Herald’s Jon Nyatawa.

A closer look at Justin Fields

Our Zach Abolverdi takes an in-depth look at 5-star quarterback Justin Fields, a player Cam Newton called “the best recruit in the country.” Iverson Clement, a Florida commit, is giving the Gators an “88 percent” chance of landing Fields.

Abolverdi also has news and notes from the NFA7v7 Championship here and here.

Show me the money

Florida football coach Jim McElwain and men’s basketball coach Mike White each received a contract extension and raise on Friday. Full details here.

The conclusion of ESPN’s SEC road trip’s Edward Aschoff and Sam Kahn Jr. completed their Ultimate SEC Road Trip on Friday by looking at the slate of games in November. Of the four weeks of games, Florida is mentioned once: Week 13 against Florida State. Kahn’s explanation:

“If Auburn is as good as we think it will be, the Iron Bowl is hard to beat. However, this is a great week for rivalries, including FSU-Florida, which could have plenty at stake. Could FSU — No. 2 in our Way-Too-Early Top 25 — be in the College Football Playoff hunt? Will Florida have already clinched a spot in Atlanta for its third consecutive SEC title game and have an outside shot at the CFP? Either way, the Swamp should be rocking for this one.”

Confident Collins

Former Florida defensive coordinator Geoff Collins is using a combination of swagger and Nick Saban ways as he prepares to take over as the head football coach at Temple.

Team USA softball

Five current and former Florida softball players are competing for Team USA this summer. Here’s a quick update on how they have fared so far.

Women’s Golf

Three members of the Florida women’s golf team competed at the 2017 Ladies’ British Open Amateur Championship, with Marta Perez making it to the match play quarterfinals  in the 144-player field.

Let’s keep talking

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