LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Losing an ACC series for the first time since 2012, No. 3 Florida State (37-5, 9-3 ACC) dropped the final game at Louisville (25-14, 6-6 ACC) by a score of 10-9 on Monday night at Ulmer Stadium. FSU trailed the Cardinals 7-3 entering the top of the seventh, scored six runs to take a 9-7 lead, but a walk-off, three-run double by Rebecca Chung gave Louisville the victory.
The Seminoles had entered the weekend unbeaten in their last 52 ACC series, with a record of 48-0-4 against ACC opponents over that span, including 38 sweeps. It marked the first ACC series loss for the Noles since May 5-6, 2012 at Maryland.
“What a battle and what a game,” said FSU head coach Lonni Alameda. “The final game of a series is always going to come down to making adjustments and competing and fighting for every pitch, and that’s what we saw tonight. We worked for some early runs, Louisville took advantage of some opportunities to take the lead but we never quit and regained the lead in the seventh, though we just couldn’t close it out. It’s a tough loss, but these situations and experiences will be big for us the rest of the season.”
The Seminoles jumped out to a quick 3-0 lead in the top of the first before recording an out as Cali Harrod led off with a walk, stole second and moved to third on a single to right by Carsyn Gordon. Gordon stole second base and Sydney Sherrill hit an RBI infield single to short, scoring Harrod and Gordon has hit by the ball in a rundown between second and third, which allowed her to score on the play. Elizabeth Mason brought in Sherrill for her 44th RBI of the season on a fielder’s choice to first base.
FSU starting pitcher Meghan King retired the first six batters she faced, but Louisville managed to load the bases with nobody out in the third inning on a walk and a pair of singles. Sidney Melton tied the game with a one-out triple to right center, and King ended the inning with a groundout and a strikeout.
Louisville took a 5-3 lead in the bottom of the fourth inning as Chung hit a single with two outs and Charley Butler was hit by a pitch. Maddy Newman drove both runners in with a triple to left center to put the Cardinals in front.
Kathryn Sandercock entered to pitch for the Noles in the bottom of fifth inning and sent down the first two batters on a line out and a groundout, before a single from Taylor Roby and a two-run home run by Caitlin Ferguson extended UofL’s lead to 7-3.
Makinzy Herzog opened the FSU seventh inning with a walk and one-out walks to Morgan Noah and Harrod loaded the bases. Gordon hit an RBI single to center to cut the Louisville lead to 7-4, and Sherrill launched a grand slam to center to put the Seminoles in front 8-7.
Mason continued the inning with an infield single and Deja Bush entered to pinch run at first base. The redshirt junior stole second and third and scored on an RBI single by Dani Morgan to extend the FSU lead to 9-7.
King came back in the game to pitch the bottom of the seventh and the Cardinals got the first two runners on base via a single and a walk. A one-out walk loaded the bases and Chung ended the game with a three-run double to right center.
Florida State will continue ACC play next weekend with a three-game series at North Carolina (22-13, 11-4 ACC) on April 13-15. The games on Saturday and Sunday will be broadcast on ACC Network Extra and will start at 1:00 p.m., while Monday’s 7:00 p.m. game will air nationally on ESPNU. Links for the broadcast and live stats will be available on the softball schedule page of Seminoles.com.
Fans can listen to the FSU softball coaching staff, head coach Lonni Alameda and assistant coaches Travis Wilson and Craig Snider, on their weekly podcast: Coaches and Coffee – The FSU Softball Podcast. Each week, the coaches talk about the current state of the Seminole softball team, chat about NCAA softball from around the country, and have a lot of fun along the way. The podcast can be found on iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, or directly at our website – fsusoftballpodcast.wordpress.com.
Throughout 2018-19, the Seminoles will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of women’s intercollegiate athletics at Florida State and there are many events and reunions planned for all women’s sports. Head to www.seminoles.com/50th/ for more information that will be updated throughout the year.
Follow Florida State softball on Twitter (@FSU_Softball) and Instagram (fsusoftball), and like our Facebook page (Facebook.com/FSUsoftball) to keep up to date with everything about Seminole softball.