April 11, 2007
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
While the rainy weather prevented any post game celebration, the Florida State softball team provided all the fireworks at the plate during the 100th meeting between Florida State and Florida A&M. The Seminoles pounded out six hits and took advantage of four Rattler errors as they prevailed 9-1 in five innings on Wednesday (April 11).
The 100 meetings between the two schools is just the tenth series to reach 100 games. Florida State is 93-7 against the Rattlers, tying the mark for the most wins over any one school. Cal State Fullerton also holds a 93-7 advantage over UC Santa Barbara.
“While the numbers are lopsided, over the last couple of years this has been a very competitive rivalry,” FSU head coach Dr. JoAnne Graf said. “It’s been a fun rivalry. We know that every time out FAMU is going to give us their best and we have to ready to play.”
The Seminoles improved to 29-19 on the year as it swept all four games of the season series with the Rattlers. Florida A&M dropped to 11-34.
Coming on in the fourth inning to get the victory for the Seminoles was right-hander Tiffany McDonald (Belfair, Wash.) The junior threw a pair of perfect innings with four strikeouts to improve to 11-11. Right-hander Terese Gober (McDonough, Ga.) got the start gave up one unearned run in three innings with six strikeouts and four walks. Taking the loss was for the Rattlers was Ashley Jones as she dropped to 5-13.
Collecting a third of Florida State’s hits was two-time All-American Veronica Wootson (Fontana, Calif.) as she went 2-for-3 with a pair of runs scored. Short stop Yuruby Alicart (Maracay, Venezuela) and first baseman Brittany Osmon (San Diego, Calif.) field for the team lead with two RBIs.
Every player in the FSU starting line-up reached base and eight of the nine batters scored a run. Even though she was 1-for-1 in the box score, Osmon reached base during all three at bats as she drew a pair of walks.
“We needed to get the offense going a little bit after the weekend,” Graf added. “Veronica is starting to come around and she’s very important to our offensive success. When she gets on base it opens up the offense and we can do a lot of different things to put pressure on the other team.”
Florida State got its first two runs without the aide of an RBI. In the bottom of the first inning, left fielder Jessica Gilmore (Fort Walton Beach, Fla.) picked up a two-out single, stole second and advance to third on a wild pitch. She scored when Alicart got hung up in run down just long enough for Gilmore to cross the plate. Then in the second inning, catcher Robin Ahrberg (Stillwater, Okla.) drew a lead off walk, moved up to third on two wild pitches before pulling off the double steal with right fielder LaShaun Davis (Marietta, Ga.) to make it 2-0 in FSU’s favor.
Still in the second, Wootson dropped down a bunt single and designated player Monica Montez (Corona, Calf.) loaded the bases when she reached first when her third strike was dropped by the catcher. One out later, Alicart drove in Davis and Wootson with a single to center field. Osmon followed with a single to right field to clear the bases as Montez and Alicart came around to score to make it a 6-0 contest.
After the Rattles scored their lone run in the third, two more Florida A&M miscues in the bottom of the inning led to a pair of runs for the Seminoles. Third baseman Michelle Snyder (Wenatachee, Wash.) started the inning with a walk then Wootson’s second hit of the game put runners on first and second. A failed pick off attempt at second base sent Snyder towards third base and when the throw to third sailed into the Florida State dugout, both runners scored.
The Seminoles picked up their ninth run in the bottom of the fourth and then after FAMU did not score in the top of the fifth the game was ended by the eight-run run. Osmon started the fourth with her second walk and moved up to second on a failed pick off attempt. A sacrifice moved her up a base and she scored the deciding run on a ground out by Ahrberg.
The Seminoles get back into conference action this weekend when they travel up north to Chestnut Hill, Mass., for a three game series with Boston College.