May 14, 2009
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – For the first time in five years, Florida State (43-14) will host the NCAA Regional at JoAnne Graf Field on May 15-17 as the No. 1 seed (16th-overall). This season marks the seventh-consecutive NCAA appearance and the Seminoles kick things off against fourth-seeded Oklahoma State (34-20) at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 15. The first game will match second-seeded California (35-18) and third-seeded Mississippi State (28-16).
The Noles trail the all-time series against OSU (6-8) and Cal (1-11) and are tied with the Bulldogs (5-5) after dropping a 5-4 decision earlier this year.
Florida State is led in the circle by ACC Pitcher of the Year and Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-Southeast Region team member Sarah Hamilton. The sophomore is ranked fourth in the nation with a 0.84 overall ERA, seventh for strikeouts per seven innings, 18th for total strikeouts (283) and 24th with nine shutouts.
Fellow All-Southeast Region member Kaleigh Rafter tops the Seminoles with 11 home runs, 11 doubles, 42 RBI and is batting .349. The starting catcher jumped to the No. 1 spot in the Single Season Top 10 with 508 putouts this season and also ranks tied for third in home runs this year.
The last time Tallahassee hosted a softball regional was in 2004 which is coincidentally the last year the Seminoles earned a berth to the Women’s College World Series where they fell 4-2 to Cal in the first round.
The NCAA Regional is a double-elimination tournament and the winner of the Florida State-Oklahoma State game will face the winner of the Mississippi State-California game at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday.
For more information, including a complete NCAA Regional schedule, live stats and radio links, log onto: NCAA Tallahassee Regional Tournament Central.