The No. 4
Florida Softball team (31-2, 7-1 SEC) completed its second Southeastern
Conference sweep, as they defeated Arkansas
(21-9, 1-5 SEC), 7-2, in the series finale in Fayetteville on Saturday.
Florida scored its seven runs on 12 hits, while holding Arkansas to only two
runs on five hits. Four different Gators tallied two hits each on the day with
eight different players getting hits overall.
The Florida bats heated up
and scored three runs in the top of the fourth to come back from being down
1-0. Junior Ali Gardiner (Waccabuc, N.Y.) led off the inning with a double to
left center. Fellow junior Danyell Hines (Bryan, Texas)
entered the game to pinch run for her. Senior Mary Ratliff (Mt. Sterling,
Ky.) followed with a walk. Both
runners moved into scoring position on a sacrifice bunt by freshman Megan Bush (Anaheim Hills, Calif.).
A walk to freshman Kristen Adkins (McKinney, Texas)
loaded the bases. Freshman Kristine Priebe (Moorpark,
Calif.) was hit by a Katy Henry
pitch to bring home Hines for the first Gator run of
the game. Junior Kim Waleszonia
knocked a sacrifice fly deep into center field, scoring Ratliff and putting the
Gators up 2-1. Freshman Aja Paculba’s (Wildomar, Calif.) pushed Adkins across the plate for
the two-run Gator lead.
Florida added to its lead in the
following inning. Freshman Tiffany DeFelice (Coral
started the inning with a double. Gardiner stepped up to the plate and took the
first offering from Henry over the fence for her second home run of the season.
Miranda Dixon came in to replace Henry in the circle for Arkansas. Ratliff grabbed the Gators’ third
consecutive hit of the inning through the right side. She moved to second on
Bush’s second sacrifice bunt of the game. Sophomore Corrie Brooks (Christmas, Fla.)
drove a base hit through the left side to score Ratliff to put her team up 6-1.
Gators scored their final run in the top of the seventh as pinch hitting
freshman Kelsey Bruder
blasted the first home run of her Gator career over the right field fence.
team got on the board first in the bottom of the opening inning. They pushed a
run across with no hits in the inning. Leadoff batter Jessica Bachkora drew a walk from Florida
junior pitcher Stacey Nelson (Los Alamitos,
advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Kayla Johnson. Bachkora
moved to third on a passed ball, then scored on a
sacrifice fly to left for the 1-0 lead.
Arkansas’ second run crossed the plate in
the fifth. Johnson led off the inning with a base hit. Dixon
drew her third walk of the game, this one from Florida
freshman pitcher Stephanie Brombacher (Pembroke
Pines, Fla.). A
Whitney Cloer base hit to left center scored Johnson
earned the win for Florida
to improve to 19-2 on the year. Brombacher pitcher
the final three innings to earn the first save of her Gator career. Henry took
the loss for Arkansas
as she gave up five of the seven runs. Her record moves to 10-4 for the season.
Florida will have next week off from
conference play as it takes the field again on Wednesday.
The game is set for 5 p.m. at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium. Saturday and Sunday the Gators will play a
three-game set with Longwood. Saturday’s doubleheader begins at noon with
Sunday’s single game at 11 a.m.