CATHEDRAL CITY, Calif. – On a breezy night in the desert, No. 1 Florida State (11-1) split its first two games of the 2017 Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic on Thursday night. FSU lost by a score of 2-0 to No. 18 Texas A&M (12-0) before earning an 8-2 win over Stanford (8-4).
“I loved our fight today,” said FSU head coach Lonni Alameda. “In the Texas A&M game, even though we were having our struggles, we never quit battling. I also loved how we didn’t let the loss linger into our next game. We were able to come out and continue to attack each pitch and see a lot of success against Stanford. A lot of quality learning opportunities from tonight and another chance to get out and play Florida State softball tomorrow.”
FSU had several offensive chances throughout the Texas A&M game as the Seminoles had runners on base in each of the first six innings, including runners in scoring position in the third, fourth and sixth innings. Texas A&M’s centerfielder Erica Russell kept the game tied at 0-0 in the fifth, leaping well over the top of the wall to rob Ellie Cooper of a home run.
Jessica Burroughs had a solid outing in the circle, giving up just two runners and one base hit through the first 5.1 innings of the game. Texas A&M got its second hit of the game in the sixth inning from Kelli Milligan, which was quickly followed by a home run by Kaitlyn Alderink to give the Aggies a 2-0 lead.
The two runs were the first earned runs allowed by the Florida State pitching staff in the last 48.1 innings, dating back to Furman on February 11. The first four earned runs given up by the Seminoles in 2017 came via the home run.
Texas A&M starter Samantha Show (4-0) was difficult for the Seminole bats to figure out, as the sophomore tossed a career-high-tying 15 strikeouts in the complete game victory, scattering four hits and three walks in her 7.0 innings of work to earn the win.
Burroughs (5-1) finished with 5.1 innings pitched, giving up two runs on four hits with zero walks and eight strikeouts. Freshman Cassidy Davis faced just one batter in the sixth, but got two outs as she induced an inning-ending double play.
Morgan Klaevemann led the Noles at the plate, batting 2-for-3 with a stolen base. Cooper and Sydney Broderick also posted base hits, while Cali Harrod had a walk and a stolen base.
The Noles continued to find ways to get runners on base in the early innings against Stanford, but couldn’t bring any of them in. FSU loaded the bases in the first on a walks by Cooper and Alex Powers, as well as a single by Jessica Warren, but all three would be left stranded.
In the third inning, FSU loaded the bases again behind walks by Cooper, Warren and Broderick, yet the Noles couldn’t break through on the scoreboard.
Stanford got out to a 2-0 lead in the third inning after the first two batters reached base on walks from FSU starter Meghan King. A pair of RBI singles from Whitney Burks and Kristina Inouye gave the Cardinal the first lead of the game.
The Noles battled back with three runs in the top of the fourth – all with two outs – to take a 3-2 lead. Zoe Casas drove a single to right field, was pinch-run for by Korina Rosario and Klaevemann followed with bunt single. Cooper tied the game with a double down the left field line, and eventually came in to score on an RBI single by Warren.
FSU extended its lead to 4-2 in the fifth on a sac fly from Cassidy Davis. Dani Morgan opened the inning with an infield single and moved to third on a base hit by Harrod, before coming to score her fifth run of the season.
The Seminoles finished their scoring in the seventh inning, highlighted by doubles by Morgan, Klaevemann and Warren. Davis added an RBI single in the four-run inning for the Noles as they extended their lead to 8-2. It marked the sixth four-run inning of the season for Florida State.
Meghan King (5-0) earned the win after tossing 6.0 innings, giving up six hits, two runs and two walks with six strikeouts. Davis pitched a scoreless seventh inning, giving up two hits.
FSU continues in the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic on February 24 with a game against San Diego State at 11:30 p.m. ET.
The four remaining games of the weekend will be broadcast live on FloSoftball.com, and fans will need to sign-up for a membership in order to watch the games. A free FSU Softball Radio broadcast, as well as live stats, will be available for each game on Seminoles.com.
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