March 8, 2014
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The No. 9-ranked Florida State softball team (19-3, 1-1 ACC) opened ACC play with a split against Virginia (3-15, 1-4 ACC) on Saturday afternoon at The Park in Charlottesville, Va. The Cavaliers took game one 11-9 and the Seminoles came back with an 8-0 mercy-rule victory in game two.
“I’m really pleased with how our team bounced back after the first game,” said head coach Lonni Alameda. “We know that every team is dangerous and we need to play hard to the final out. Jessica Burroughs pitched an amazing game for us and our hitters gave us plenty of offense all afternoon. We look forward to facing them again tomorrow.”
Florida State had another quick start in game one, as back-to-back doubles by Courtney Senas and Maddie O’Brien along with a sac fly from Victoria East gave FSU the 3-0 after the opening frame. It marked the sixth time this season that the Seminoles have scored at least three runs in the first inning.
The Seminoles extended their lead in the second as Alex Kossoff walked and Tiffani Brown laid down a great bunt single to start the inning. Senas followed with a two-run triple to right center to make it 5-0 FSU. A walk to O’Brien and a wild pitch on ball four to East allowed another Seminole run to score making it 6-0 after two innings.
Virginia pushed across a run in the second as Lindsay Mayer reached on a fielding error and eventually came in to score on an infield single. They led off the third inning with a double and single and cut the FSU lead to 6-2 after three full innings.
FSU got into the scoring column again in the fourth behind consecutive singles by Senas and O’Brien along with a double by Bailey Schinella to extend the lead to 8-2 Florida State.
Lacey Waldrop made a solid start in the circle, throwing 5.0 innings and allowing two runs, one earned, on four hits with one strikeout. Jessica Nori (0-1) came in to replace Waldrop to start the sixth.
Virginia would take the lead in the sixth behind seven runs, three earned on six hits. Fielding errors and seeing-eye singles would allow Virginia to bring 11 batters to the plate in the inning and take a 9-8 lead.
The `Noles would not give up and tied it up in the seventh as singles from Celeste Gomez and Victoria Daddis put runners at second and third with one away. Brown would drive in the tying run with a groundout to the second baseman but Senas would end the inning with a fly out to center.
Nori would get two quick outs in the Virginia seventh before surrendering a single to Megan Harris and a walk-off home run to Marcy Bowdren.
The Seminoles came back in game two and were in control from start to finish. Jessica Burroughs tossed a one-hitter in 5.0 innings with eight strikeouts. She only allowed two base runners in the entire game and only one batted ball left the infield.
The offense in game two came in the fourth and fifth innings as the `Noles plated six and two runs, respectively. Brown opened the fourth with another perfect bunt single and O’Brien drove her in with a double to left center. Singles from Schinella and East made it 3-0 FSU.
Stephanie Hartness would single in East and Gomez crushed her first home run of the year, a two-run shot to deep left field to end the scoring for Florida State in the fourth.
FSU brought in two more in the fifth behind back-to-back home runs from O’Brien, her ninth of the season, and Schinella, her first of the year.
Burroughs (9-0) closed out the Virginia fifth with two strikeouts to give FSU the mercy-rule victory.
Florida State will wrap up the series with Virginia on March 9 at 11:00 a.m. The Seminoles will then travel to Ft. Myers for a doubleheader against Virginia Tech on March 11 hosted by Florida Gulf Coast starting at 5:00 p.m. The Seminoles will then play one game against the FGCU Eagles on March 12 at 7:00 p.m.
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