Sunday May 9, 2010No. 5 Softball Ends Regular Season with 9-0 Victory
The No. 6/5 University of Florida softball team swept the series against South Carolina with a five-inning 9-0 victory on Sunday afternoon at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium. Senior Francesca Enea (Woodland Hills, Calif) broke the Southeastern Conference career home run record by hitting her 61st bomb. Enea had two homers and six RBIs in her record-setting weekend.
Prior to the game, Enea and fellow senior Corrie Brooks (Christmas, Fla.) were honored in a Senior Day celebration. The two seniors helped lead the Gators back-to-back SEC championships, UF’s first two SEC tournament championships, the first two Women’s College World Series appearances, including the championship series last year, and a 224-39 (.852) record in their four years. Brooks is eighth in UF record books with 24 career home runs and fifth with 341 assists.
With the two wins on Saturday, the Gators clinched the 2010 SEC East Division Championship.
Junior Kelsey Bruder (Corona, Calif.) led the Gators (42-7, 20-4 SEC) with a .625 (5-for-8) batting clip in the three-game series with the Gamecocks (11-40, 1-27 SEC) and tallied five runs, three RBIs, one home run, a double, a stolen base and three walks. The Florida pitchers gave up gave up six hits and six walks while striking out 14 batters on the weekend.
Junior Stephanie Brombacher (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) earned the win in her first complete-game one-hitter of the season. The righty (28-5) only gave up three walks and struck out three, as she reached her 500th career strikeout in the sixth one-hitter of her career. The Gator offense came through for Brombacher, scoring at least one run in every inning.
April Borchardt shouldered the loss for the Gamecocks, allowing six hits, five earned runs, three walks and struck out one in 2.1 innings of work.
The Gators plated two runs in the first to give themselves the early advantage. Junior Aja Paculba (Wildomar, Calif.) led off with a single to right and advanced on a wild pitch. With two outs, freshman Brittany Schutte (Fountain Valley, Calif.) singled to put two runners on. Junior Megan Bush (Anaheim Hills, Calif.) singled to right, plating Paculba, as she hustled from second. Schutte moved to third and with the double steal on, the freshman was able to cross the plate before Bush was tagged out to put Florida up, 2-0.
Through the first three innings, Brombacher retired nine of the first 11 batters, allowing only two walks. She struck out three of the first five batters, recording her 500th career K in the second inning.
Bruder added a third run to the Gators’ total in the second. She led off with a single that dropped just beyond first base and moved to second when classmate Tiffany DeFelice (Coral Springs, Fla.) drew a walk. Freshman Kelsey Horton (Valrico, Fla.) earned a walk of her own to load the bases for Paculba and the second baseman recorded her second sac fly in as many game to drove home Bruder.
Enea marked her senior day by hitting her 20th home run of the season in the third, a solo shot to left, which broke the SEC career record. Florida added another run in the inning to increase its lead to 5-0 when Schutte singled to right and scored on a Bush double down the left-field line. The shortstop's hit chased Borchadt from the game, who was replaced by Ashley Chastain.
The Gamecocks were finally able to get a hit off of Brombacher with two down in the top of the fourth. Evan Childs tallied a single to the gap in left center, but was unable to score when Lauren Lackey popped up to Bush for the final out.
Florida added two more runs in the fourth on a double by sophomore Michelle Moultrie (Jacksonville, Fla.). Horton drew a walk and sophomore Lauren Heil (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) came in to pinch run. Paculba singled up the middle to put two runners on and both runners moved into scoring position on an illegal pitch that forced Chastain from the game. Kierstyn White came in as the third pitcher and Moultrie took advantage, smacking a double to left field to score both runners and put the Gators up by seven.
The Gators finished off the Gamecocks in the bottom of the fifth. Bruder led off with a double to left, but White was able to retire the next two batters. Horton then stepped into the batter's box and hit her second long ball of the weekend, plating Bruder and securing the 9-0 shutout.
Florida will travel to Fayetteville, Ark., to play in the SEC Tournament from May 13-15 at Bogle Park. Seeding will be determined after all SEC games are complete on Sunday. The first game begins Thursday at noon (ET) and the championship game will be played at 7:30pm (ET) on Saturday. All games can be heard on WYGC-FM 105 The Game (104.9) and all tournament games will be shown on ESPNU with the championship game on ESPN.