TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – A couple swings of the bat gave No. 13 Florida State (8-3) an early lead in the first inning on its way to a 10-1 victory over Florida A&M (5-6) on Wednesday night at JoAnne Graf Field. Redshirt freshman Alex Powers hit a three-run home run and freshman Carsyn Gordon added a grand slam in the seven-run first inning for FSU.
“I completely enjoy our friendly rivalry,” said FSU head coach Lonni Alameda. “Coach Wiggins is amazing and has done an amazing job with that program over the years. We really enjoy this softball rivalry we have, and we have great softball here in town with TCC and FAMU. We appreciate going back and forth, playing at their place and our place.”
FSU’s explosive first inning started with walks to Morgan Klaevemann and Jessica Warren. The first ball in play for the Noles came off the bat of Powers and she crushed a home run off the top of the trees behind the wall down the right field line to give FSU a 3-0 lead.
After a pair of Seminole outs, Ellie Cooper continued the inning with a walk, followed by an infield single by Cali Harrod. Alex Kossoff bunted her way on to load the bases for Gordon, who hit a 2-2 pitch over the wall in right for a grand slam, extending FSU’s lead to 7-0. The home run was Gordon’s first hit of her career and it marked the first time a Seminole had a home run for their first collegiate hit since Lauren Harris on February 22, 2014 against UC Santa Barbara.
FSU added three more runs in the second inning after a single by Warren and walks by Sydney Broderick and Zoe Casas loaded the bases. Warren came in to score on a wild pitch from FAMU pitcher Kenya Pereira, while the final two runs were scored as Broderick started a rundown on a fielder’s choice by Cooper and an errant throw by FAMU went into left field, giving the Noles a 10-0 lead.
Each member of the starting lineup for Florida State scored a run on Wednesday night and Warren was the only one to score multiple runs in the game.
FSU starting pitcher Jessica Burroughs excelled in the circle, with only a slight blemish to the game’s first batter. Burroughs allowed a leadoff triple to FAMU’s Jessica Nathan, but left her stranded there after a ground out and two strikeouts. Burroughs retired the next six batters she faced, including striking out the side in the third inning to end her evening. Burroughs faced just 10 batters in 3.0 shutout innings, giving up one hit, no walks and recording six strikeouts.
It is the second time this season Burroughs has faced only 10 batters in a 3.0 inning performance with at least six strikeouts, as she recorded seven punchouts vs. Stephen F. Austin on February 17.
Florida A&M drove in a run in the fourth inning off FSU reliever Meghan King. A pair of singles from Alexis Day and Amber Fullwood put the first two batters on base, but a double play by Powers and Harrod slowed down the threat. Kieifi Myrick lined a single into left to score Day and make it 10-1 FSU.
King settled in and retired the next three batters she faced and ended with 1.2 innings pitched, three hits, one run with no walks or strikeouts. Freshman Abby Evans came in to close out the game and walked a batter and earned a strikeout to end the game.
The Seminoles stay in Tallahassee this weekend as they host the Unconquered Invitational on February 26-28. Bradley, Hofstra and UAB will come to town for a multi-part invitational that will begin with a round-robin group stage on Friday and Saturday morning with each team playing the other once, feeding into a bracketed tournament for Saturday night and Sunday morning. Each team will play a total of five games on the weekend.
Admission is free for all regular season games at JoAnne Graf Field. A free live radio broadcast from Maddie O’Brien and Robin Ahrberg, as well as live stats will be available on Seminoles.com.
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