The Florida Gators concluded the three-day GRU Classic finishing in second
place after dropping the Championship game 5-0 to Florida International (6-
5) Sunday afternoon in front of 411 fans at Florida Softball Stadium.
Florida's record stands at 2-3 on the season following the four-team
FIU pitcher Amanda Nealer was credited with the win, her second in as many
outings against Florida. Florida pitcher Mandy Shuerman (0-2) received the
"I was disappointed we didn't make adjustments at the plate, but we will
go in Tuesday and take care of that," Florida coach Karen Johns said
following the loss. "FIU did a great job swinging the bat and putting the
ball in play."
FIU followed up their 4-0 win Friday night against the Gators with an
equally impressive pitching display. Florida was held to only seven hits
in their two games against the Golden Panthers.
Although Florida and FIU each had five hits, Florida was unable to collect
more than one hit in an inning.
The best chance Florida had to score may have occurred in the first inning
after Schuerman singled with two outs and stole second base. Jennifer
Mossadeghi then walked, leaving Florida with runners on first and second.
A Prissie Walden strikeout, however, ended the threat.
Florida also had an opportunity to make a dent in FIU's lead in the fifth
inning. With one out, Bree Berger drilled the first pitch offered by
Nealer deep to the warning track in left-center field, but it didn't have
enough distance to clear the fence.
FIU scored all five of their runs in their three-hit second inning after
capitalizing on two Florida errors. Lesley Gillen led off the inning with
a double to left-center field. A fielding error by shortstop Jackie
Marchetta scored her two batters later to put FIU up 1-0.
Shuerman was replaced by pitcher Amanda Moore after FIU's second run of
the inning came on an errant throw to home by second baseman Jenilee
Garner. After giving up a RBI single to centerfield, Moore hit Nicole
Dubovik with the bases loaded to put FIU up 4-0. FIU scored their final
run of the game when Jennifer Owens' fielder's choice out brought home
Shuerman was credited with only one earned run in the inning.
Florida International coach Kim Gwydir was impressed with her team winning
the GRU Classic.
"I'm happy with the win because any time you beat Florida it's a good
win," Gwdir. "I don't want our team to go to sleep after taking a five-run
lead because Florida could come back."
Florida returns to action Thursday, February 14, for a Valentine's Day
double-header against nationally-ranked Washington at Florida Softball
Stadium. The first pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m.