Florida Softball team (9-2) split games in the second day of the Cox Communications
Classic to earn the second seed in the championship portion of the tournament
on Sunday. Florida lost its first game 1-0 in
eight innings to NC State, but came back to win the second over Marshall, 9-4.
Florida opened its game with Marshall with four runs in the top of the
first inning. Sophomore Kim Waleszonia (Fontana,
Calif.) led off the game with a
base hit up the middle. She moved into scoring position on a ground out to
third from sophomore Kristina Hilberth (Dunedin,
Fla.). Freshman Francesca Enea
(Woodland Hills, Calif.) hit an infield single, moving Waleszonia to third. Enea moved
to steal second and the thrown down allowed Waleszonia
to steal home. . With two outs, a base hit by sophomore Ali Gardiner (Waccabuc, N.Y.)
scored Enea for a 2-0 lead. Senior Lauren Roussell
(Cerritos, Calif.) stepped up to the plate and hit a
two-run homer to give the Gators the 4-0 lift.
Marshall answered with three runs in the
bottom half of the inning. J.J. Bitner drove a lead
off single up the middle. Caitlyn Jackson drew a walk from Florida
senior pitcher Stacey Stevens (Gainesville, Fla.).
With one out, Samantha Rodriquez knocked a base hit up the middle to score Bitner from second and move Jackson to third. Gina Guzzo’s
hit through the left side tacked on a second Thundering Herd run. Kristina Knecht hit a double to left with two outs to narrow Florida’s lead to one
run at 4-3.
Gators added a run in the top of the second as Waleszonia
scored on a Enea sacrifice
fly to center.
lead at only one run as they added a run in their half of the second when Tara
Holmes scored on a Bitner base hit.
Florida added two runs each in the fourth
and the seventh. In the fourth, Enea drew a lead off
walk. Senior Melissa Zick
hit a single down the left field line. Gardiner walked to load the bases. Roussell’s base hit down the left field line scored both Enea and Zick for the 7-4 lead.
pinch hitter Savana Kelly (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.)
drew a leadoff walk in the seventh. Senior Lacy
Howard (League City, Texas)
came back in to pinch run for Kelly and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt
by freshman Corrie Brooks (Christmas, Fla.). Waleszonia’s
first home run of the season and second of her career to secure the five run lead for the
started the game for Florida, but was relieved
by sophomore Stacey Nelson (Los Alamitos,
Calif.) with two outs in the
fourth, so Nelson was credited with the win, improving her record to 6-1 on the
year. Jackson took the loss for Marshall.
Florida lost its first home game of the season, 1-0 in eight
innings to North Carolina
State in its first game
of the day.
Florida did not get its first base runner
on until the top of the fifth. Zick drew a lead off
walk. Sophomore Ashley Harris (Royal
Palm Beach, Fla.)
came in to pinch run for her, but was not able to move past second.
reached again on a walk with two outs in the bottom of the seventh and stole
second, but was not able to move further.
Hawkins was placed at second in the top of the eighth for North Carolina State
due to the international tie breaker rule. She advanced to second on a fly out
to right by Lisa Nentwig and scored the go ahead run
on a Heather Gelbard sacrifice fly to center field.
started the Gator half of the inning at second. She moved to third on a Roussell base hit to left with one out in the inning. She
would get no further though, as the next two batters struck out to end the game
with a 1-0 Wolfpack victory.
The Wolfpack first threatened in the top of the first. With one
out, Blair Harkey reached on an error. She moved to
third on a double by Jen Chamberlin. Harkey attempted to score on a fielder’s choice play to Roussell at short stop, but a great throw from Roussell to Enea at the plate to
prevent the run from scoring.
received her first loss of the season. She struck out seven batters, catching
five looking. NC State pitcher Shaina Ervin gave up
only one Gator hit and only allowed a total of three Florida base runners in the game.
N.C. State earned the
top seed in the tournament with the win over Florida
and will play the winner of the 11:15 a.m. Florida
game at 1:30 p.m. for the tournament title. Fourth
seeded Fordham will play fifth seeded Chattanooga
in the consolation game at 9 a.m.
the Florida Softball Stadium and normal softball parking areas will be limited
on Sunday. Fans coming to Sunday’s 9 a.m. game will need to park at Fi Field located on Hull Road east of the softball stadium.
The field will need to be accessed from 23rd. Those attending the 11:15 a.m.
game will be able to park at the Lakeside
dorms located on Radio Road.
Fans will need to access Radio
Road from 34th.