Sunday March 14, 2010No. 4/11 Softball Takes Rubber Match Over Ole Miss, 5-3
The No. 4/11 University of Florida softball team defeated Ole Miss, 5-3, on Sunday at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium to give the Gators the 2-1 series win. Junior Megan Bush (Anahiem Hills, Calif.) led the Gators, going 2-for-2 with one run and three RBIs.
Junior Stephanie Brombacher (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) earned her 14th win for the Gators, pitching five innings, giving up nine hits, three runs, one walk and striking out five. Freshman Ensley Gammel (Bakersfield, Calif.) tallied her first career save and struck out three batters in two innings. Junior Aja Paculba (Wildomar, Calif) was crucial for the Gators (18-3, 2-1 SEC) as she contributed one run and two RBIs while going 2-for-4.
Brittany Barnhill (7-2) shouldered the loss for Ole Miss (16-10, 3-2 SEC), giving up two hits, four runs and six walks while striking out one.
Ole Miss tried to make an impact early in the game when Corrine Doornberg scored the first run of the day in the Rebels’ first at bat. Doornberg recorded an infield single and advanced to second on an error after Alise Doubt reached on a sacrifice bunt attempt. Lauren Grill then singled through the left side to load the bases. Barnhill tallied the team’s third single of the inning, allowing Doornberg to score. Then the Gators stepped up the defense as Paculba turned a double play by throwing a ground ball to home to get Doubt at the plate and junior catcher Tiffany DeFelice (Coral Springs, Fla.) turning it to throw to first for the second out. Ashley Dowdy grounded out to freshman shortstop Brittany Walker (Tomball, Texas) to hold the score at 1-0.
The Rebels added to their lead in the second by putting another run on the board. Brombacher struck out Aly Presswood, but Cali Overbeck hit a double that skimmed the left-field foul line. Alyssa McGovern singled with a chopper to third, advancing Overbeck, followed by a single to right by Doornberg for a score. After senior third baseman Corrie Brooks (Christmas, Fla.) caught the second out, Brombacher got Grill swinging to end the inning.
Florida had three runners cross home plate in the second to take the lead. DeFelice led off with a walk and came home on Bush's first career triple that bounced off the right-field wall. Paculba drove in two runs when she hit her third home run of the season, putting the Gators up 3-2.
Senior Francesca Enea (Woodland Hills, Fla.) scored in the third to increase the Gator lead to 4-2. Enea earned a walk and advanced to second when junior Kelsey Bruder (Corona, Calif.) grounded out. Freshman Brittany Schutte (Fountain Valley, Calif.) and DeFelice both walked as well to load the bases. Barnhill was chased from the game was replaced by Becky Nye. The pitching change didn't phase the Florida as Bush hit a sacrifice fly to score Enea.
The Gators added another run in the fifth to increase their total to five. Bruder walked and advanced on a ground out by Schutte. Bush singled to center field, allowing Bruder to hustle around the bases and cross home plate.
Overbeck nailed a lead-off home run in the sixth to cut into the Gator lead but it would be the final time the Rebels would score. Gammel was called in to take over pitching duties. She retired all three batters she faced, tallying a swinging K and two groundouts.
Gammel and the Gator defense held off the Rebels in the top of the seventh to tally the final win of the series. Grill singled and after a Gammel strikeout, moved to second when the pitcher issued a walk. Gammel forced a groundout for the second out of the inning, but the runners advanced to second and third, increasing the scoring threat. The freshman settled in and struck out Presswood to end the game and preserve the Gator win.
The Gators return to action on Wednesday, March 17 when they face SEC opponent Auburn in a doubleheader. The first game is slated to begin at 4 p.m. with the second game starting approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of the first. The first game can be seen on Sun Sports. Both games can be heard on WYGC–FM 105 The Game (104.9) and be seen on GatorVision.tv. Live stats will also be available on www.GatorZone.com.