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Saturday March 16, 2002Softball Splits With Kentucky

Gainesville, FL

The Florida softball team (13-18, 1-4) split a doubleheader with the Kentucky Wildcats (15-10, 1-1)today at the Florida Softball Stadium. The Gators won the first game 6-1 while Kentucky took the second 7-6.

Florida took an early lead in game one. Nikki Baldwin started the Gator rally with a single down the right field line in the bottom of the second inning. Katy Berger followed with another single and advanced to second on the throw while Baldwin advanced to third. Jenilee Garner hit a RBI single to score Baldwin for Florida's first run. Garner stole second and berger was thrown out at home on the attempted double steal for the second out of the inning. Florida's top hitter, Mandy Schuerman, stepped up to the plate and drove a double deep into center field to score Garner. Jackie Marchetta walked and she and Schuerman each advanced a base on a passed ball. Mylin Prieto continued her success at the plate with a double to centerfield to score Marchetta and Schuerman and give Florida the 4-0 lead.

The Gators started where they left off in the bottom of the third. Lead off batter Jenn Mossadeghi singled up the middle. Prissie Walden walked. Baldwin reached on a fielder's choice as Walden was thrown out at second and Mossadeghi advanced to third. Baldwin stole second and advanced to third while Mossadeghi scored on an error by the Wildcat short stop.

With a 6-0 lead in the top of the second, Florida gave up their only run of the game. Rachel Friberg hit a single with one out. Jessica Nance got a second single with two outs. Friberg advanced to second on the hit and she advanced to third on the Gator error. On the next batter, Friberg scored the Wildcats only run on a wild pitch by Florida's Amanda Moore.

Moore got the win for Florida, her first in 10 appearances. Her record improves to 6-8 on the season. Meghan Cooper took the loss for Kentucky. Her record is now 7-3.

Kentucky took the early jump in the second game. Three runs scored on a home run by Andrea Eilertson in the first inning. Florida also scored in the first inning. Mandy Schuerman led off with a double and scored two batters later to narrow the Kentucky lead to 3-1.

The Widcats added one more run in the second and two more in the third. In the top of the second after a double by Sandi Dengler, Brittani Houghton came in the game to replace Florida Starting pitcher, Amanda Knowles. Dengler scored from third on a sacrifice fly by Jones, extending the Wildcat lead to 4-1. Mandy Schuerman replaced Houghton in the top of the third inning. Leadoff batter Lyndsey Angus reached first on an error and scored on an Eilertson triple. Eilertson scored on a sacrifice fly by Friberg, lifting Kentucky's lead to 6-1.

The Gators narrowed the lead to three runs as Bree Berger hit a two run homer over the left field fence. The Wildcats scored one more run off a Angie Dal Pazzo single up the middle in the top of the sixth inning before the Gators staged a comeback in the bottom of the inning.

Berger led off the inning with a single up the middle. Prissie Walden reached on a fielder's choice, while Stacy Rosen who was running for Bree Berger was thrown out. Mossadeghi reached base on a dropped fly ball by the Wildcat right fielder and she and Walden each took another base on a throwing error by the same player. Zimbardi knocked a single to the short stop to score Walden. Kary Berger hit another RBI single to score Mossadeghi and make the Wildcat lead only two runs at 7-5.

Florida needed to score two more runs in the seventh to tie the game and give them a chance to start another win streak. Mylin Prieto started the bottom of the seventh with a big double down the right field line. Meghan Cooper came in to replace the Wildcat starter Jennifer Howland. Prieto advanced to third on a ground out to second by Bree Berger. Prieto scored on an error by the Wildcat second baseman leaving Florida only one run down. But that is where Florida's run would end. The game ended with a 7-6 loss for the Gators.

Howland got the decision for Kentucky. Her record moves to 5-2 on the season. Cooper earned her second save of the game. Knowles took the loss for Florida. Her record is an even 5-5.

The rubber match between the two teams will start tomorrow at noon at the Florida Softball Stadium. Two-time Olympic gold medalist Dr. Dot Richardson will sign autographs for an hour before the game.

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