March 22, 2012
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) – The 23rd-ranked Florida State University softball team faces its first road weekend in conference play as it battles Virginia in a doubleheader on Saturday, March 24, as well as a single game on March 25.
FSU and UVA will begin Saturday’s doubleheader at noon and approximately 2 p.m., and will wrap up the three-game set at 11 a.m. on getaway day.
Both teams have a long series history dating back to 1986, as the Seminoles (26-5, 3-0) lead 67-17 overall. FSU is 15-7 all-time on the road in Charlottesville, winning its last road series against the Cavaliers (16-9, 3-0) in 2010 by taking two of three games.
The three-game series marks a return trip for Commonwealth State native Lacey Waldrop, FSU’s freshman pitcher who leads the team with 12 victories. The Colonial Heights, Va., native was born and raised less than two hours from the UVA campus.
Last season, FSU took three of four from Virginia, with its last victory coming in the ACC Championship semifinals in Atlanta. In that 12-5 victory, the Seminoles pounded out 12 hits that included home runs by Celeste Gomez and Courtney Senas. Both players finished with two hits apiece in the contest.
UVA is led by the pitching of Melanie Mitchell, who shows a 10-6 record with a team-leading 1.79 ERA. Mitchell has tossed 13 complete games this season and opponents are hitting .209 against her.
In their first ACC series of the season, Virginia emerged with three signature victories on the road at Georgia Tech. Alex Skinkis is hitting .314 to lead the everyday starters, while UVA is batting .261 as a unit.
“This is definitely a crucial weekend for us being back in conference play. We know Virginia is a very good team that has a great pitcher and some good hitters. Some of their wins this season have been impressive and they’ll be a tough test for us,” head coach Lonni Alameda said.
FSU has boasted some excellent pitching throughout the season, but its batting has also shown signs of progress over the last three games. Redshirt freshman shortstop Maddie O’Brien is beginning to turn up the offense, going 6-for-8 over her last three games played. FSU is also coming off a season-high 15 base hits in a 10-1 win over Florida A&M.
In 2012, the Seminoles have recorded a 20-0 record when scoring more than two runs. Conversely, FSU’s pitching has allowed three runs or less in 29 of its 31 games played this season.
Fans can follow the action all weekend long on CBS GameTracker, as well as through in-game updates on FSU softball’s official Twitter handle – @FSU_Softball.