big swings of the bat and the Florida Softball team (3-0) was able to take a
win from the defending NCAA champion and No. 1 team in the nation for the
second year in a row. The Gators defeated No. 1 Arizona (2-1), 3-1, in the
first game of day two in the Kajikawa Classic in Tempe, Ariz.
came down to the bottom of the eighth inning. With a 1-1 tie, sophomore Kim Waleszonia (Fontana, Calif.)
was placed at second due to international tie-break rules. She advanced to
third on a perfectly placed sacrifice bunt by senior Lauren Roussell (Cerritos,
Calif.). Waleszonia was out at
the plate on a very close call on a fielder’s choice by freshman Francesca Enea (Woodland Hills, Calif.).
With two outs and a runner on first, senior Melissa Zick (Tampa,
Fla.) stepped up to the plate.
Zick looked at the first offering from Arizona ace Taryn Mowatt and took the
second over the right center fence for the game-winning, two-run home run.
Arizona opened the scoring in the top of
the second. Chelsie Mesa drew a leadoff walk from Florida
sophomore pitcher Stacey Nelson (Los Alamitos, Calif.).
Calista Balko knocked a base hit into right field. A foul ball to deep right
from Sarah Akamine advanced Mesa to third. With two outs, Cyndi Duran hit a
bloop single to score Mesa for the 1-0 Arizona lead.
Florida sophomore Brooke
Johnson (Lakeland, Fla.) tied the game with one swing in the
bottom of the third. As Florida’s
lead off batter for that half inning, Johnson took the first pitch she saw deep
over the centerfield fence for the 1-1 tie.
Florida had a chance to break the game
open in the bottom of the sixth. Waleszonia drew a lead off walk from Mowatt. With one
out, Enea knocked a base hit through the left side. Zick drew a walk to load
the bases, still with only one out in the inning. Senior Lacy Howard (League City, Texas) took Mowatt to a full count before striking out
and sophomore Ali Gardiner (Waccabuc, N.Y.)
grounded out to first to end the inning.
pitched a great game for the Gators to earn her second win of the season. She
retired 15 of the last 16 batters she faced in the game and only allowed one Arizona hit after the
third inning. Mowatt (1-1) struck out 11 Gators in the loss.
Florida continues Kajikawa Classic play Saturday afternoon against
Wisconsin at Arizona State’s