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Tuesday February 12, 2013No. 5 Gators Face Dolphins in Jacksonville Wednesday, Host 2013 Lipton Invitational Feb. 15-17

Gainesville, Fla.

The University of Florida softball team kicks off this week’s game action Wednesday with a mid-week contest at Jacksonville. The Gators (5-0) and Dolphins (3-1) square off at the JU Softball Complex at 6 p.m. UF versus JU will be the first of seven softball games for the Orange and Blue this week as the Gators open the home slate Feb. 15-17 with the 2013 Lipton Invitational, the first of two home tournaments at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium this spring.

Fans wanting to track the Gators in action against Jacksonville can watch the live video feed or turn the radio dial to WYGC-FM 105 The Game (104.9) locally with play-by-play Mike Gillespie and former Gator All-American Megan Bush on the call. Fans can also tune into the live audio stream of each broadcast online.

All broadcast information, including GameTracker, radio and GatorVision live streaming links for the 2013 Lipton Invitational can be found on UF’s schedule page.

The Gators kicked off the 2013 season hot last weekend, going an undefeated 5-0 at the Kajikawa Classic in Temp, Ariz., and for their efforts jumped from No. 13/14 to No. 5/5 in the ESPN.com/USA Softball Collegiate Top 25 and USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 Polls, respectively, Tuesday.

Florida defeated two top-five teams in No. 3 Cal and No. 5 Oregon, along with No. 13 Arizona over the span of the three-day tournament. The Gators also squared off with Creighton in their season-opener and Cal State Northridge.

 Individually, Florida was led at the plate by SEC Player of the Week, freshman Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan.), who batted .556 (10-18) and registered a 1.111 slugging percentage over the weekend with 10 runs, two doubles, a triple, two home runs, five RBI and five stolen bases throughout the three-day tournament.

All 16 Gators saw action in UF’s season-opening tournament, including all three pitchers, each of them picking up wins – Hannah Rogers (Lake Wales, Fla.) with top-five wins against Oregon and Cal, Lauren Haeger (Peoria, Ariz.) against Creighton and Arizona and sophomore Alyssa Bache (Clearwater, Fla.) against the Cal State Northridge Matadors Saturday.

Florida registered a .303 batting average as a team on opening weekend with 40 hits, nine doubles, a triple, eight homers–two each by Stewart and freshman Taylor Schwarz (Palm Beach, Fla.) –and 36 RBI. Sophomore Bailey Castro (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) and freshman Kirsti Merritt (Lake Panasoffkee, Fla.) both connected for grand slams, Castro against Arizona and Merritt against Creighton Friday. The Gators were additionally 14-15 in the stolen base category over the weekend, shut out two squads (Oregon, Northridge) and run-ruled one (Creighton).

SCOUTING JACKSONVILLE

Jacksonville (3-1) opened the 2013 campaign at the Panhandle Invitational in Tallahassee. The Dolphins downed Bethune-Cookman in its season debut and Florida A&M twice before falling to No. 24 Florida State.

Dolphin Senior Sarah Simon batted .400 (4-10) with two runs, two home runs and four RBI to pace the Dolphins. Simon blasted both home runs in the 4-1 win against Florida A&M on Feb. 10. In the circle for the Dolphins, freshman Victoria Brown fanned seven batters in seven shutout innings against Bethune-Cookman. Senior Dale Tillman and freshman Cecile Gomez also picked up victories for JU.

SERIES HISTORY

Jacksonville  10-0

Home: 6-0            Away: 3-0              Neutral: 1-0

Date

Location

W/L

Score

2/27/04

Gainesville, Fla.

W

1-0

3/19/04

Jacksonville, Fla.

W

4-2

3/4/05

Tampa, Fla.

W

14-1 (5)

3/22/06

Gainesville, Fla.

W

5-0

4/22/08

Gainesville, Fla.

W

2-0

4/22/08

Gainesville, Fla.

W

5-0

2/11/09

Jacksonville, Fla.

W

11-0 (6)

2/17/10

Gainesville, Fla.

W

6-1

2/16/11

Jacksonville, Fla.

W

7-0

2/15/12

Gainesville, Fla.

W

10-2 (6)

NEXT UP

Florida will open its home schedule Feb. 15-17 with the 2013 Lipton Invitational. The Gators will host UNC Wilmington, Savannah State, Western Carolina and Charleston Southern in the first of two home tourneys for UF this season at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium.

The Gators will first square off with UNC Wilmington at 4 p.m. Friday, followed by Savannah State at 6:15 p.m. The Orange and Blue will be back at it Saturday with games against Western Carolina (12 p.m.) and Savannah State (2:15 p.m.) before wrapping up weekend play with UNC Wilmington (1 p.m.) and Charleston Southern (3:30 p.m.) Sunday.

For a complete schedule of UF’s 2013 Lipton Invitational, visit the Florida softball schedule page on GatorZone.com.

Fans planning to attend UF’s Sunday Lipton Invitational games at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium should plan to arrive early, as parking will be impacted by Gainesville’s Five Points of Life Marathon. The 9 a.m. Sunday contest between Western Carolina and Savannah State will be played at Santa Fe College in Gainesville.

Be sure to follow the Gators on Twitter and visit the team on Facebook for all the latest on Gator softball.

FLORIDA VERSUS THIS WEEK’S OPPONENTS

Date

Opponent

Location/Field

Game Time (ET)

Series Notes

2/13

Jacksonville

JU Softball Complex

6 p.m.

UF leads, 10-0

2/15

UNC Wilmington

Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium

4 p.m.

First meeting

2/15

Savannah State

Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium

6:15 p.m.

First meeting

2/16

Western Carolina

Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium

12 p.m.

First meeting

2/16

Savannah State

Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium

2 p.m.

TBD based on 2/15

2/17

UNC Wilmington

Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium

1 p.m.

TBD based on 2/15

2/17

Charleston Southern

Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium

3:30 p.m.

First meeting

 

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