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Taylore Fuller had two hits and two RBI for Florida in Wednesday's win over Jacksonville.

Wednesday February 19, 2014No. 1 Gators Run Season-Opening Win Streak to 12, Defeat Jacksonville 6-0 in Home Opener

Gainesville, Fla.

Taylore Fuller had two hits and two RBI for Florida in Wednesday's win over Jacksonville.

BOX SCORE

 

The No. 1 Gator Softball team won its home opener Wednesday, defeating Jacksonville University 6-0 on Wednesday night at Katie Seashole Pressly Softball Stadium.  

 

Lauren Haeger (Peoria, Ariz.) pitched a four-hit shutout with no walks and seven strikeouts, improving to 4-0 on the year. The junior also contributed offensively, blasting a two-run home run for her team-leading fifth homer of the year in the fifth inning.

 

Left fielder Taylore Fuller (Trenton, Fla.) opened the scoring with a leadoff homer in the third, her third home run of the season. First baseman  Taylor Schwarz (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.) singled to start the next inning, then advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt and scored on an errant JU throw to put the Gators ahead 2-0.

 

Freshman Justine McLean (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.) hit a two-out single in the fifth, setting up Haeger’s home run that gave Florida a 4-0 lead. The Orange and Blue then loaded the bases in the sixth on a walk and two singles. Fuller notched her second RBI with a single that plated center fielder Kirsti Merritt (Lake Panasoffkee, Fla.). A sacrifice fly from second baseman Kelsey Stewart (Wichita, Kan.) brought in catcher Aubree Munro (Brea, Calif.) for UF’s sixth run to produce the final margin and extend the Gators’ winning streak to a dozen games to begin the season.    

 

NOTABLES

·         Munro’s sixth-inning single extended her career-best hitting streak to 10 games, doubling her previous high.

·         Haeger’s home run pushed her hit streak to eight contests.

·         Stewart was hitless in two at-bats, snapping her hitting streak at eight games.

·         Haeger’s shutout lowered her season ERA to 0.78 (3 ER / 27.0 IP).

·         The complete game was Haeger’s third of the year, tying Hannah Rogers for the team lead.

 

WALTON’S WORDS

On the Gators’ win:

“I thought we had a lot of good performances. We had some good at-bats, really good defensive plays and obviously a lot of good hitting. Lauren had a two-run homer. Taylore Fuller is getting it going. Really good baserunning by Taylor Schwarz to make some things happen. Overall, I thought there were a lot of bright spots.”

 

On scoring six runs against JU pitcher Victoria Brown:

“That’s realistic for us. Six runs, eight hits, and getting a sacrifice bunt and a couple steals, that’s a realistically good game, especially facing a good pitcher. She did a good job last year facing us. She’s got multiple pitches. She’s got a rise-ball, she throws a changeup, so she’s solid. She came into the game with a sub-1.00 ERA pitching against good teams. She’s definitely good, and the defense behind her made some good plays too.”

 

On which plays made the difference tonight:

“To me, it was the second run. Taylor Schwarz getting from first to third on a bunt and scoring on a wild throw, that gives you breathing room. Being able to turn two double plays when they had runners in scoring position and end the threat, end the rally, those to me were the plays of the game.”

 

PLAYER QUOTES

Sophomore UT Taylore Fuller

On getting two hits from the No. 9 spot in the batting order:

“Being at the bottom of the lineup, that’s my job, to turn the lineup over and get to our top batters so we can get more [runners] on base and score more. I just did my job for my team. We’ve been working really hard, and we were able to get in a groove.”

 

Junior RHP/1B Lauren Haeger

On her performance in the circle tonight:

“I think it was okay. I don’t think it was my best. I wasn’t hitting my spots as well. I think I had a little bit of luck on my side. I felt good, but not the best I could.”

 

On what she wants to improve on during the weekend:

“I want to hit my spots a little bit more, be a bit more sharp and work the corners more.”

 

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UP NEXT

The Gators host the 2014 University of Florida Lipton Invitational this weekend. The action begins Friday (Feb. 21), when Florida will play Troy (4 p.m.) and Indiana (approximately 6:15 p.m.) at Katie Seashole Pressly Softball Stadium. Fans can find live stats via Gametracker on the GatorZone.com schedule page. Radio coverage will be provided by WGGG (1230-AM), with Adam Schick and former Gator All-American Megan Bush on the call.  

 

-UF-

 

 

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