March 21, 2008
FULLERTON, CALIF. – In the first extra-inning game of the season, Florida State came within one run of defeating No. 18 Washington, but would suffer the 4-3 loss after nine innings. Senior pitcher Tiffany McDonald showcased one of her best games with 12 strikeouts as the Seminoles move to 24-12 and Washington 20-7-1.
McDonald, now 9-3 on the season, pitched her heart out and held Washington hitless until the seventh. The Seminoles struck first in the bottom of the fourth as freshman Ashley Stager scored from third on an error by the Huskies’ left fielder. With the 1-0 lead, it would be a Seminole error by centerfielder Carly Wynn that would allow the tying run to cross home in the top of the seventh. With no runs scores for FSU in the bottom, the game would head into to extra innings.
In the international tie breaker, whoever was the last out of the previous inning is placed on second as both teams get three outs to score. Both Washington and Florida State advanced the runners on second to third on sacrifice bunts, but would not cross home plate in the eighth.
In the top of the ninth with Morgan Stuart on second for the Huskies, Alicia Blake would go yard on a 2-2 count to take a 3-1 lead. Designated player Ashlyn Watson would get on base with a single and come around to score off a single RBI by Bailey Stenson to jump out to a 4-1 advantage heading into the bottom of the inning.
Florida State would not back down, senior Brittany Osmon waited on second as sophomore Robin Ahrberg stepped to the plate. Ahrberg wasted no time as she swung on the first pitch to send a bullet over right center for a two-run RBI, closing the gap to 4-3 still in favor of Washington.
With no outs on the board, junior Jessica Gilmore would single and then advance to second when sophomore Camille Garcia reached first on an error. With runners on first and second, the Seminoles fell victim to two fly balls to center and left field. In a last-ditch effort to clear the bases, pinch hitter Allison Collins was called in. Collins stayed alive but would pop up to the pitcher to end the ball game.
On the offense, Ahrberg led as she went 1-for-3 with one run scored and two RBI. She recorded her third home run of the season and set a new season best. FSU would score three runs, one earned, on five hits with two errors in the loss. Also recording hits were Whitney Buckmon, Gilmore, Stager and Monica Montez.
The Seminoles are now 1-3 this weekend after the loss to Washington, who they defeated at the Judi Garman Classic last season.
Florida State wraps up competition at the Judi Garman Classic Saturday, March 22, as the ladies take on tournament host Cal State Fullerton at 3:45 p.m. PST.