April 21, 2001
Tallahassee, FL –
Jen White-Stokes pitched just the second perfect game ever at the Seminole Softball Complex and the 17th-ranked Seminoles hit three doubles, a triple and two home runs to down East Carolina 9-0 in four and a half innings and sweep Saturday’s South Atlantic Softball Alliance (SASA) doubleheader. The win gives the Seminoles (47-7, 5-1) a 2 ? game lead in the race for an automatic NCAA bid over second place Virginia. Florida State and Virginia meet next weekend in Tallahassee for a doubleheader that may decide the SASA championship. The East Carolina Pirates dropped to 41-20 overall and 2-4 in the SASA with the two losses Saturday.
“This is the way you’d like to see your team play as we head into the most important stretch of games of the season,” said head coach Dr. JoAnne Graf. “Everybody loves it when we are able to beat Florida but this was a much more important set of games if we want to go to the post-season. Jen pitched a great game and then we had a great fourth inning where we hit three doubles and two home runs. I hope our kids keep it up against Virginia and Maryland over the next two weekends.”
After two and a half scoreless innings, Florida State got on the board in the bottom of the third when Serita Brooks led off with a double and then advanced to third on a wild pitch from East Carolina starter Lisa Paganini (11-5). She came around with the game’s first run when Kimmy Carter sent an infield shot to Pirate second baseman Keisha Shepperson who couldn’t field the ball and Brooks scored on the error.
White-Stokes retired the Pirates in order in the top of the fourth and Stuart then led off the bottom of the inning with a double to center field. After White-Stokes sacrificed Stuart to third, Monique Marier hit her fourth home run of the year and her first at home to put the Seminoles up 3-0. Maier, a junior college transfer from Lake City Community College, now leads the team with 32 RBI on the season. Catcher Elisa Velasco singled up the middle and advanced to second on a wild pitch and was followed by an infield hit by third baseman Staci Brandon. Serita Brooks then cleared the bases when she hit her third triple of the season. Brooks finished the game going two for three with two RBI and two runs scored.
The Seminoles weren’t done in the fourth and continued to build on their 5-0 lead when Kimmy Carter recorded her 26th RBI of the year reaching safely on a fielder’s choice that plated Brooks. After a van der Linden fly out, Carter moved to second on a wild pitch and Robyn Gauger doubled to right center brining in Carter for Gauger’s 30th RBI of the season. The Pirates then brought in relief pitcher Hillary Halpern to try and end the inning but Brandi Stuart took the sophomore’s second pitch of the game out of the stadium and the Seminoles increased their lead to 9-0. FSU recorded eight runs on eight hits with no ECU errors in the inning and sent 12 batters to the plate.
That was more than enough for senior White-Stokes (17-2) who continues to have a huge season for Florida State. The Tuttle. OK native pitched her first collegiate perfect game and lowered her ERA to just 0.55, which was already the fifth best in the nation coming into this weekend’s action. She leads team in ERA, appearances (25) and is tied for the lead in shutouts (9, tied with Malerich). She is also second on the team with a .362 batting average.
For the afternoon, FSU scored 18 runs, batted .438 as a team, hit six doubles, a triple and two homeruns while slugging .729. The win was the eighth in a row for Florida State and they now have a week off before they continue SASA play against ACC rival Virginia. The Cavaliers are 43-13 and 2-2 in the SASA and ACC and will face the Seminoles April 28, 2001 in a doubleheader which is scheduled to begin at 1:00 p.m. at the Seminole Softball Complex. All games at the Seminole Softball Complex are free to the public and additional information on upcoming games is available on-line at www.seminoles.com.