TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Heading into the fifth weekend of ACC play with an undefeated record against conference opponents, No. 1 Florida State (32-1-1, 12-0 ACC) will host Pitt (17-13, 1-8 ACC) for a three-game series at JoAnne Graf Field on March 31-April 2.
The series will be part of FSU’s “Paint It Pink” weekend, where the softball team will wear special pink uniforms on Friday night and the program will help bring awareness to various types of cancers, as well and honoring survivors, doctors and loved ones we’ve lost in the fight. Partnering with Tallahassee Memorial Healthcare and the FSU College of Medicine, there will be numerous activities throughout the complex to spread information about how to get involved and help.
“Our ‘Paint It Pink’ weekend is so important to us,” said FSU head coach Lonni Alameda. “One of our core principles is ‘Playing for those who can’t’, and we’ve had so many people involved with this program that have been impacted by cancer, from Taylor Foster and Madison and Monk, to parents, siblings, friends, grandparents and everyone in between. It is important for us to do our part and try to bring awareness and support to something that everyone sadly has been touched by.
“On the softball side, Pitt can swing it and already has a couple of Top-25 wins this year, so they are going to come in here and bring us their best. They are already comfortable with the field after playing here for the ACC/Big Ten Challenge at the beginning of the season, so it should be a quality weekend of ACC softball.”
The Noles have won their last 14 conference games and 26 of their last 27, dating back to April 8, 2016. Overall, FSU has only lost 10 times in its last 105 regular season games against conference opponents, winning the ACC regular season title in 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016.
Even though Florida State ranks in the top five in the NCAA in five different statistical categories – on-base percentage (.463 – second), batting average (.360 – third), slugging percentage (.560 – third), earned run average (0.98 – fourth) and scoring (7.26 – fifth) – the Seminoles have been even more dominant in their 12 conference games this year.
As a team, the Noles are batting .401 in ACC play, with three players over .500 – Jessica Warren (.567), Morgan Klaevemann (.514) and Alex Powers (.514). Overall, the team is slugging .621, is getting on base 51.6% of the time and has 29 stolen bases against conference opponents.
FSU’s pitchers have allowed just 50 hits and 16 runs in 72.0 innings versus ACC foes, but 10 of those runs came in just three late-game innings as Georgia Tech scored three in the fifth and four in the sixth innings on March 4, and Virginia Tech plated three runs in the bottom of the fifth inning on March 10.
Jessica Burroughs enters the weekend fresh off her fourth ACC Pitcher of the Week honor of the season, as well as the fourth no-hitter of her career. The redshirt senior has a 16-1 record with a 0.70 ERA and 155 strikeouts in her 99.2 innings pitched this season.
Fellow pitcher Meghan King is also putting together an impressive year in the circle, as the redshirt sophomore is 15-0 with a 0.65 ERA and has allowed just 11 runs all season. King has not allowed a run in her last 24.2 innings of work and has not issued a walk the in the last 22.2 innings, dating back to March 15 against Florida Gulf Coast.
The Seminole offense has a trio of individuals that are producing on the same level as all of FSU’s opponents. Junior Morgan Klaevemann leads the team with 36 runs scored, while redshirt senior Alex Powers trails closely behind with 35. Those totals nearly match the 37 runs allowed by the entire FSU pitching staff. Junior Jessica Warren has 38 RBI so far this season in 90 at bats, topping the 34 runs batted in 771 combined at bats by FSU’s opponents.
The Noles and Panthers will start the series at 6:00 p.m. in Friday, while the games on Saturday and Sunday will begin at 1:00 p.m. and 12:00 p.m., respectively. Admission is free for all home regular season games at Joanne Graf Field, while there will be a streaming FSU softball radio broadcast, along with live stats, available on Seminoles.com.
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