April 16, 2006
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
A little run support when a long way for the Florida State softball team. Pitcher Tiffany McDonald had a nearly identical performance to her 19-strikeout outing on Saturday, but this time got the win as she surrendered just one hit to lead the Seminoles to a 2-0 victory over North Carolina State on Sunday (April 16) in the final game of the Atlantic Coast Conference series.
Florida State got its league record back to .500 as it improved to 7-7 with the win while its overall ledger moved up to 32-21. The loss dropped NC State out of the ACC lead at 10-5 with a 38-17 overall mark.
“Tiffany matches up really well with them, (Melissa Wood) Moe called a great game and Tiffany threw a great game,” FSU head coach Dr. JoAnne Graf said. “Tiffany stayed composed the whole game and I was really proud of her. I thought she did a super job.”
On Saturday, McDonald (Belfair, Wash.) took a no-hitter into the ninth inning, only to give up a pair of runs and get the loss. Sunday she took the no-no into the sixth before Tess Corona picked up a double to start the inning. McDonald threw her league-leading 26th complete game to improve to 21-12. The right-hander struck out eight batters with three walks. Abbie Sims took the loss, dropping her to 18-11.
“Today Moe and I had the same mentality as we did yesterday to get ahead of their hitters,” McDonald said. “I tried to be a little more intense today because I was a little tired from yesterday so tried to work even harder.”
Florida State took advantage of early North Carolina State errors to get the only runs of the game in the first inning. Left fielder Natasha Jacob (Coppell, Texas) reached first base on a throwing error by the pitcher and as she made her way to second, the throw from the right fielder went into center field, allowing Jacob to take third.
Designated player Whitney Buckmon (Stone Mountain, Ga.) followed with an infield single then stole second base. Shortstop Yuruby Alicart (Maracay, Venezuela) came through with a single to left field to score Jacob with the first run of the game. Pushing the second run across was second baseman Veronica Wootson (Fontana, Calif.) as she drove in Buckmon with single to centerfield that was just past the outstretched hands of the Wolfpack shortstop.
“Yesterday Tiffany threw a great game and we didn’t get her a run, today we got two runs and that held up,” Graf added. “If you can’t score you’re not going to win and we made an effort to come out early and score on them. I thought we should have added a couple, but we held on to win.”
The first four batters in the FSU’s line-up all picked up a hit, led by Wootson as pounded out a pair of hits for the second day in a row. The Seminoles had their chance to increase the lead as they stranded six runners on base, including four in scoring position.
Florida State plays its final home games of the season on Tuesday (April 18) when it plays host to Troy in a 4 p.m. doubleheader. In between games, the Seminoles will recognize the five seniors on this year’s team.