March 22, 2003
Marietta, GA –
Saturday’s Buzz Classic opener must have seemed like d?j? vu all over again for the 16th-ranked Florida State softball team (20-9). For the second straight year at the Buzz Classic, FSU downed the Tigers (2-5) 5-1 and for the second straight year senior 1st Team All-American Brandi Stuart homered in the victory. The win marked the eighth time in the 10 games that the Tribe has limited Princeton to one run or less and is the Seminoles’ tenth win in a row over the Tigers.
The Tigers got off to a fast start against Seminole starter Casey Hunter (13-5). After retiring the first hitter of the inning, Princeton drew a walk and singled to put runners on first and second. The Tigers clean-up hitter grounded out to first but advanced the runners into scoring position with two outs. Hunter issued her second walk of the inning to load the bases before a two-out single staked Princeton to a 1-0 lead. Hunter retired the side on a strikeout but the Tribe went to the bottom of the first trailing.
Tiger freshman hurler Erin Snyder (1-2) put the Tribe down in order in the bottom of the first as Princeton came back up to the plate. Hunter rebounded in the second as she set Princeton down in order on two ground outs to third and a pop out to short.
Snyder continued her mastery over the Tribe in the bottom of the second as she once again put FSU down 1-2-3 including her first two K’s of the game. Hunter matched the Tiger freshman as she retired the side in order for the second consecutive inning.
Florida State started the bottom of the third with its first hit of the game as the hot hitting Beth Wade singled through the left side of the infield. After Snyder got Carly Brieske looking at strike three, Natasha Jacob sacrificed Wade to second base with two down in the inning. The Seminoles were unable to capitalize though as the score remained 1-0 heading into the fourth.
For the third straight inning Hunter got the Tigers in order as the game moved into the bottom of the fourth. After Tatiana George popped out to start the bottom half of the frame, Jessica van der Linden recorded the Tribe’s second base knock of the game when she singled up the middle. She was followed by Stuart who blasted her fifth home run of the season. The Cerritos, CA native sent a 1-2 pitch over the fence in left center putting FSU in front 2-1. Last year at the same tournament, Stuart hit four HR’s in FSU’s six games.
Hunter started the fifth with her second strikeout of the game and she went on to get the Tigers in order for the fourth straight inning. The Seminoles went quietly in the bottom half of the inning except for Jacob’s two-out slap single.
In the top of the sixth, Hunter got the first two hitters she faced upping her total to 15 straight batters retired before giving up a two-out walk. She came right back though and retired the side leaving Princeton with just three outs remaining.
The Seminoles tried to pad their lead in the bottom of the sixth as Stuart and Elisa Vasquez each recorded two-out singles. After a double steal placed both runners in scoring position, Robyn Larson drew a walk to load the bases. Wade then cleared the bags as she tripled to right knocking in three runs and extending FSU to a 5-1 lead. The three RBIs were one short of the four Wade had entering the game.
Hunter looked like she was cruising to her 13th win as she got the first two hitters in the seventh. The Tigers drew a two-out walk and then recorded an infield single as they attempted to get back into the game. Hunter ended the game though on a ground out as she picked up her 15th complete game of the season.
Florida State will take a couple of hours off before resuming play at 12:00 p.m. versus Boston University. The Seminoles conclude the day at 6:00 p.m. with a rematch versus Middle Tennessee State. For more information on the 2003 Florida State softball team, please log on to seminoles.com, the official athletic home for Florida State athletics on the internet.