May 2, 2006 - by
Seminole Softball Game Day: FSU Travels South to Play UCF

May 2, 2006

Florida State at UCF
Tuesday, May 2
5:30 p.m. (DH) •  Orlando, Fla.
UCF Softball Complex (600)

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Game One (4 p.m.) GameTracker
Game Two (6 p.m. approx) GameTracker

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Florida State (34-24, 8-9 ACC)
Home: 29-14 
Away: 4-5
Neutral: 1-5
ACC: 8-9

UCF (19-32, 4-17 C-USA)
Home: 8-14 
Away: 4-11 
Neutral: 7-7 
C-USA: 4-17

Base Hits (What You Need To Know):
• Florida State University is making just its second appearance at the University of Central Florida after an taking both games of the initial meeting in 2004.

• The Seminoles are 6-1 against the Golden Knights. UCF broke through for its first victory last season, taking the first game 2-1 in Tallahassee.

• Florida State is 9-2 versus schools from the state of Florida with doubleheader sweeps of No. 24 Florida and Florida International

• Sophomore pitcher Tiffany McDonald (Belfair, Wash.) took over the national lead last week for appearances (43) and innings pitched (247.0). Despite not playing last week, she is still one-third of an inning ahead of Bethune-Cookman’s Viveca Patterson for the national lead in innings pitched, while the two are tied for appearances.

• Shortstop Yuruby Alicart (Maracay, Venezuela) tied the single-season school record with her tenth home run of the season.

Brittany Osmon’s (San Diego, Calif.) home run in the final game against VT was the 28th hit by FSU this year, the third-highest single-season total in school history.

Florida State Back In Action After A Week Off
Following a week off for final exams, the Florida State University softball team is back in action Tuesday (May 2) when it plays its final regular-season non-conference games. The Seminoles (34-24 overall, 8-9 ACC) will head south to take on the University of Central Florida in a 5:30 p.m. doubleheader.

Seminoles Try To Stay Perfect In O-Town
So far Orlando has been the happiest place on Earth for the Seminoles after they swept the 2004 doubleheader in their only trip to UCF. Last season was a different story as the Golden Knights won their first game against Florida State, taken the opener 2-1, before the Seminoles rallied for the 1-0 victory. Overall, Florida State owns a 6-1 advantage in the all-time series that dates back to 2002 after UCF started its program in 2000. The Seminoles had won the first five meetings in the series until the Golden Knights came through with their first win last year off Tiffany McDonald.

A Little Rest Goes A Long Way
Florida State will be well rested as it goes into Tuesday’s contest at UCF as the Seminoles are coming off a season-long stretch of ten days off. Prior to this break, the longest Florida State had off was a five-day run in late March after which it came back to sweep a doubleheader from Florida International. When getting a break of thee days or more, Florida State is 14-7 that next day, including a 6-2 mark in the first game of a doubleheader and a 3-1 record in single games. Last season, the Seminoles posted a 15-11 record with three days of rest or more.

Seminole Salvage Game Three To Avoid Sweep At Virginia Tech
Florida State had its chances to jump up in the Atlantic Coast Conference standings in its last outing, but Virginia Tech pitcher Angela Tincher was too much for them as the Seminoles had to take the final game, 9-7, to avoid the sweep. Florida State got out to a quick lead after Brittany Osmon’s three-run home run during the top of the first. In the series opener, Tiffany McDonald went toe-to-toe with Tincher, but took the loss despite giving up just two earned runs. However, the Seminoles mustered just a pair of hits. Florida State got an early lead in the first game of the doubleheader, but the Hokies rallied for eight runs in their last two at-bats for the 10-2 victory.

Defense Wins Championships?
For the last two weeks, the Seminoles have been playing some of their best defense of the year with one error or less in eight of last their nine games, including four-straight contests without an error — the school’s best stretch since the beginning of March…2004. Unfortunately, during this time, the Seminoles went 4-5 and were scoring more than a half a run lower than their season norm (3.6 runs per game). In the season finale against Virginia Tech, Florida State committed a season-high five errors, but produced a 9-7 victory. This year the Seminoles are 16-9 when committing two errors or more and just 18-15 when committing one miscue or less.

Alicart Ties School Record With Tenth Home Run
A two-run home run off one of the league’s best pitcher propelled shortstop Yuruby Alicart into the Florida State record books. Her two-run bomb in the third inning of game two of the Virginia Tech series was her 10th of the season, tying her with Tiffany Daniels (1987) and Brandi Stuart (2002) for the single-season record. The junior transfer from Thomas University ranks third in the league for homers while leading the conference at 16 doubles. She’s also in the conferences top ten in total bases (2nd), RBI (2nd), slugging percentage (3rd), triples (5th), average (8th) and runs (9th).

The Chicks Are Hitting The Long Ball
Florida State hit a pair of home runs last weekend at Virginia Tech, upping its total to 28 for the year. The Seminoles surpassed last year’s mark with the third-highest total in school history. In the two seasons with higher home run totals (2002 & 2004), Florida State ended the year at the Women’s College World Series. FSU has hit 22 or more home runs in each of the last five years with a total of 154.

Osmon Cranks First Home Run Of The Season At Va. Tech
Last Saturday’s finale at Virginia Tech may have been the best all-around game first basemn Brittany Osmon (San Diego, Calif.) has had so far this year. In the first inning she helped get FSU out to a 4-0 lead with a three-run home run, her first of the seasons. The three RBIs were a new career-high, while the two trips across the plated equaled her personal-best mark set early this year against Western Illinois (March 11).

Patience Pays Off For Florida State
Florida State showed its patients at the plate in the finale against Virginia Tech as it drew eight walks, tying its season high set against Connecticut (March 10) in the first game of the Florida State Invitational. Five of the nine players drew at least one walk, led by Yuruby Alicart’s three and a pair from Carly Brieske (Safety Harbor, Fla.). This season the Seminoles are 12-1 when they draw four or more walks. The lone loss was the 1-0 defeat to Notre Dame at the Judi Garman Classic.

Seminoles Moving Up The Single-Season Charts
The home run chart isn’t the only area where this year’s players are making their impact. Yuruby Alicart is also tied for the single-season mark at 16 doubles while rating eighth with her 46 RBI. Her double play partner, second baseman Veronica Wootson (Fontana, Calif.) is tied for seventh at seven triples and needs one more home run to tie a trio of players at seven dingers. Left fielder Natasha Jacob is close to cracking the list for hits, runs and at-bats.

Welcome Back BillieAnne
More than a month after sustaining a hand injury during a collision at the plate during the canceled game against Cal State Northridge at the Judi Garman Classic, senior catcher BillieAnne Gay (Tallahassee, Fla.) returned to action against Virginia Tech. The veteran backstop came on in the fourth inning of Saturday’s game one, then got the start in game two. In her first start since Notre Dame, Gay picked up an RBI double then came around to score the eventual winning run in the fifth inning. Prior to getting injured, Gay had scored the winning run in two (St. John’s & North Carolina) of FSU’s last three wins.

Ground Rule Double (News & Notes)
Florida State was ranked 31st in the latest RPI released by the NFCA with the 18th-hardest schedule…Veronica Wootson scored one run against Virginia Tech, moving her into a tie for ninth with Christy Larsen in school history with 125 runs…The 16 home runs hit by Yuruby Alicart and Veronica Wootson are second highest total by a pair of teammates. Brandi Stuart (10) and Monique Marier (9) combined for 19 in 2002…Pitching Tiffany McDonald needs just one more save to tie Marla Looper (1994) and Leslie Malerich (2002) for the school record at four saves…Right fielder LaShaun Davis (Marietta, Ga.) has either scored (Troy) or driven in (Virginia Tech) the winning run in each of FSU’s last two victories…Seniors Carly Brieske, Carey Galuppi (Boca Raton, Fla.), BillieAnne Gay, Kim Hoffer (Houston, Texas) and Natasha Jacob all received their degrees during graduation ceremonies on April 29.

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