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The Florida Gators softball team huddles before contest against Bethune-Cookman. Florida won 15-7 in five innings. March 29, 2017.

Gator Softball Falls to FSU In Sunshine Showdown

The last time the Florida Gator softball team took on the Florida State Seminoles was in a different setting—an at home sold out and a record-breaking crowd. The win didn’t come easy, but Florida marked the W in the books with a 1-0 win.  This time around, in front of a packed house in Tallahassee, Florida State defeated Florida 3-1 in 11 tensely played innings via a walk-off home run.

Florida’s Efforts

Kelly Barnhill started in the circle for Florida and pitched a complete game with a record-breaking 21 strikeouts and it looked as though the Gators might get another win when Janell Wheaton hit an RBI single to score Kayli Kvistad from second base, allowing Florida to score first in this contest.

However this was quickly answered by a home run by Jessica Warren, her 20th of the season, ending Barnhill’s scoreless innings streak at 51 innings.  It was the first run Barnhill had given up since March 31st against Arkansas.  After the first inning, Barnhill retired the next 10 batters. In all, she threw nearly 140 pitches in the game.  But FSU hung with the Gators.  Starting pitcher Jessica Burrough pitched the first four innings for FSU before lefty Megan King took over.   She did not allow a run.

Florida had two chances to score later in the game; a one-out double in both the sixth and ninth innings got innings started well but the Gators could not score a run.  Finally, FSU broke through in the 11th as Korina Rosario tripled and she scored on the walk-off homer by Alex Powers that won the game for FSU.   It was only the second time in the last 19 games that the Seminoles got a win against Florida.

Moving Forward

The 46-5 Gators are looking to bounce back after their loss when they play a three-game home series against North Texas starting Friday at 7, their last regular season home series of the season.  Florida will also play a game against Florida A&M Sunday afternoon. The SEC Tournament begins next week in Knoxville, Tennessee.

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