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Wednesday February 14, 2007Softball Sweeps Doubleheader with South Florida, 2-1 and 4-1

Tampa, FL

The No. 19/20 Florida Softball team swept a double header at No. 24 South Florida (3-4)  to improve its record to 6-1 on the season. The Gators won the first game 2-1 and took the second 4-1, with three of the four runs coming in the top of the seventh.


The Gators started the first game right, scoring two runs on three hits and a South Florida error in the top of the first. With one out, senior Lauren Roussell (Cerritos, Calif.) got the Gator bats going with a base hit to the Bulls’ short stop. Freshman Francesca Enea (Woodland Hills, Calif.) followed with a base hit through the left side. Senior Melissa Zick (Tampa, Fla.) loaded the bases as she reached on an error by Bulls third basemen. A RBI fielder’s choice play to short by junior Mary Ratliff (Mt. Sterling, Ky.) scored Roussell, but put Zick out at second. Sophomore Ali Gardiner (Waccabuc, N.Y.) knocked in Enea with a base hit through the left side for the 2-0 Gator lead.


South Florida attempted to close the gap in the bottom of the third. With two outs and Tara Toscano on second, Danielle Urbanik hit a ball to left field. Toscano rounded third and headed for home, but sophomore left fielder Brooke Johnson (Lakeland, Fla.) fired a strike to Enea at home to preserve the Gator lead.


The Bulls did come back in the bottom of the seventh as Ashley Bullion scored on a Britta Giddens double to make the score 2-1, but they were not able to push another run across.


Senior Stacey Stevens (Gainesville, Fla.) earned the win in the pitching circle. She struck out five to improve her record to 2-1 on the season. Cristi Ecks took the loss to move her record to 2-1.


The Gators took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the second of game two. Zick drew the leadoff walk. She advanced to second on a ground out to short from Ratliff. Gardiner drove Zick home with a base hit to center.


The Bulls tied the game in the bottom of the fourth. With two outs, three straight base hits scored Courtney Mosch.


The Gators pulled ahead in the seventh as Gardiner knocked her first Gator home run over the left field fence to lead off the top of the inning. With one out, senior Lacy Howard (League City, Texas) continued the inning with a double to center. Sophomore Kim Waleszonia (Fontana, Calif.) hit a two-out double down the left field line to score Howard. A base hit to shallow center by freshman Corrie Brooks (Christmas, Fla.) scored Waleszonia for the three-run Gator lead at 4-1.


Sophomore Stacey Nelson (Los Alamitos, Calif.) improved her record to 4-0 on the year as she struck out six Bulls’ batters, while walking none. Kristen Gordon pitched the middle 4.0 innings for South Florida and was credited with the loss, her first of the season.


Gardiner had an excellent day at the plate, going 4-for-6 with three RBI, a run scored and a home run. Waleszonia did not have a hit in the first game, but went 3-for-4 in game two with a run scored and a RBI. Sophomore Kristina Hilberth (Dunedin, Fla.) went 2-for-4 in the two games.



Florida plays its home opener Friday at 4 p.m. against Fordham in the Gators first game of the Cox Communications Classic. UT-Chattanooga, Fordham, Marshall, NC State and Florida will play tournament games at 9 a.m., 11:15 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 4 p.m. and 6:15 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 9 a.m., 11:15 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. on Sunday. Admission to all Florida Softball home games is free.








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