MIAMI, Fla. – Closing out the season-opening weekend at the Juiceblendz Softball Invitational, No. 10 Florida State (4-1) defeated Valparaiso (0-4) by a score of 16-5, in six innings, on Sunday at Felsberg Field on the campus of FIU.
“This was a nice way to wrap up the weekend,” said FSU head coach Lonni Alameda. “We have a lot of positives to take away from these games. We’re seeing a lot of people in different hitting situations so we can know what we have off the bench. Also, we got Meghan and Tessa’s feet wet in pitching their first games and working through some tough spots. Overall, it was a good tournament, and now we get to head home and go to work to prepare for Stephen F. Austin and Michigan and Minnesota this weekend.”
The Seminole offense opened the game with a big inning in the first, bringing in six runs to start the ballgame. As she has for all five games this season, Morgan Klaevemann reached base leading off the FSU first inning, this time on a bunt single, ending up on third after a throwing error and scoring on a passed ball. A pair of two-RBI singles from Ellie Cooper and Alex Kossoff, along with a RBI double by Alex Powers drove in the Seminole runs as Cali Harrod and Sydney Broderick added walks in the inning.
Klaevemann led off the second inning with a walk, stole second and came into score on an RBI single from Jessica Warren.
FSU broke out for four runs in the third inning as Harrod and Cooper each walked and stole second to start the inning. Mirroring her at bat in the first inning, Kossoff drove a single through the right side to plate two runs, giving her a career-high four RBI for the game. RBI singles from Warren and Broderick closed out the scoring in the frame to give FSU an 11-0 lead.
Jessica Burroughs was excellent in the circle for the Noles, allowing just two baserunner on a walk in her 3.0 innings of work along with five strikeouts. Meghan King came in and pitched the fourth inning and faced five batters, allowing a run on one hit with a walk and two strikeouts.
Tessa Daniels came in to pitch in the fifth inning and retired the first two batters she faced on ground outs. After a walk and a throwing error put two runners on base, a home run from Kaitlyn Ranieri cut the FSU lead to 11-4 after five innings.
In the sixth, Powers started off the inning with a walk and stole second for her first career stolen base. A single to left by Harrod enabled a first-and-third situation that resulted in Powers scoring on the play and Harrod ending up on third base. An RBI single by Zoe Casas and an RBI double by Daniels made it 14-4 Florida State with one out in the inning.
Korina Rosario singled to center and three consecutive walks to Victoria East, Mia Lacy and Macey Cheatham plated two more runs to give the Noles a 16-4 advantage.
The Crusaders battled until the very end, scoring a run in the sixth with a pair of singles and a pair of Seminole errors, but were defeated in the end, 16-5.
Daniels finished with 2.0 innings pitched and allowed four unearned runs on three hits with a walk and a strikeout. In total, 16 different Seminoles made a plate appearance, 11 recorded a base hit and nine posted at least one RBI. Klaevemann and Harrod scored a team-high three runs each.
The Seminoles return home to JoAnne Graf Field for their home opener on Wednesday, February 17 as FSU hosts Stephen F. Austin at 6:00 p.m. Admission is free and live stats as well as a free streaming radio broadcast will be available on Seminoles.com.
Follow Florida State softball on Twitter (@FSU_Softball) and Instagram (fsusoftball), and like our Facebook page (Facebook.com/FSUsoftball) to keep up to date with everything about Seminole softball.