May 5, 2011
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) – After nearly upending fourth-ranked Florida on Wednesday evening, the Florida State University softball team hopes to add some Top 25 wins to its résumé when it faces No. 17 Georgia Tech this weekend at Shirley Clements Mewborn Field in Atlanta, Ga.
The conference rivals square off on Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m., followed by the second game of the doubleheader starting at approximately 3:15 p.m. The series finale takes place on Sunday at 1 p.m.
The Yellow Jackets (42-8, 16-1) have dominated Atlantic Coast Conference play, and have emerged as FSU’s biggest conference rival after defeating the Seminoles (26-24, 8-9) in the last two ACC Championship games.
FSU has defeated two Top 25 opponents this season, taking down Kentucky by a 2-0 score on Feb. 19 at the Garnet and Gold Tournament in Tallahassee. The Seminoles also went to the Cathedral City Classic in Palm Springs, Calif., and defeated BYU, 6-4. Both victories are also RPI Top-50 wins, as well as wins over Maryland (No. 29 RPI) and Long Beach State (No. 30 RPI).
In conference play, the combination of Sarah Hamilton and Jessica Nori has kept the Seminoles in several ballgames. In 14 conference appearances, including 10 games started, Hamilton has gone 7-5 (including two 1-0 losses) with a 1.44 ERA and 89 strikeouts in 73 innings pitched. Nori has compiled a 1.93 ERA in six ACC appearances.
FSU’s ERA in ACC play is 1.79, while its overall stat is 2.44.
Hamilton is now 31 strikeouts short of 1,000 for her Seminole career, which would place her in a category of her own. This season, she has struck out 253 batters.
Jen Lapicki and Shayla Jackson have been consistent in 17 ACC games this season. Lapicki, who leads FSU with a .350 batting average overall, is hitting .333 with two home runs, 10 RBIs and two doubles in conference action. Jackson follows with a .328 mark, one home run and 11 RBIs.
Overall, FSU leads the all-time series 43-22. Georgia Tech has won six of the last eight meetings between both squads. Kelsi Weseman has emerged as one of the conference’s best hitters, showing 19 home runs, 55 RBIs, 15 doubles and a .985 slugging percentage. The Yellow Jackets have 12 student-athletes who have played in more than half of the team’s games who are batting above .300.
Kristen Adkins is Georgia Tech’s ace with a 19-5 record, five shutouts, five saves and 132 strikeouts in 150.1 innings pitched. She will likely counter Hamilton in what would be a tremendous pitching matchup in game one of the series.
Following this weekend’s series, FSU returns to Georgia Tech for the ACC Championship that begins next weekend. FSU’s first-round matchup is already set against Virginia Tech, but its series finale against the Yellow Jackets will determine whether it gets the No. 4 seed and a home slot in the first round or a No. 5 seed as the away team. That contest will take place at 7:30 p.m.