Photo Credit: Twitter: @GatorsSB

No. 5 Florida Gators Shutout Redbirds in Season Opener

Florida Gators softball made quick work of its first opponent in 2019.

The No. 5 Gators (1-0) defeated the Illinois State Redbirds (0-3) 15-0 in the first game of the USF Opening Weekend Invitational.

Gators’ Offensive Explosion

Senior first baseman Amanda Lorenz got the ball rolling against Illinois State’s Shannon Felde in the first inning with a double to center field to score Hannah Adams from first.

Lorenz scored two batters later along with Danielle Romanello on a triple from junior outfielder Jaimie Hoover.

A single by Jordan Matthews capped off a four-run top of the first.

Felde was pulled after two innings of work with eight runs, seven earned against her.

Florida piled it on in the top of the third. Three straight singles loaded the bases with no outs. The Gators utilized this situation to manufacture six runs.

Shortstop Sophia Reynoso and outfielder Alex Voss worked walks to make it 6-0. An error and a pair of singles pushed it to 10-0.

A sacrifice fly by Voss scored junior catcher Jordan Roberts to make it 11-0 in the top of the fourth. Roberts drove in a run of her own in the next inning on a single. Reynoso finally made it 15-0 with a two-out, three-run home run.

Lorenz, Hoover and Reynoso combined for the cycle. They went 6-for-10 with nine RBIs and five runs scored. Lorenz’s three hits moved her past Megan Bush for eighth all-time in career hits.

Barnhill Back At It

Florida’s ace Kelly Barnhill picked up in 2019 right where she left off the season prior.

The 2018 SEC Pitcher of the Year and First-Team All American surrendered only one hit and no runs over three innings of work. She struck out seven of the 10 batters she faced.

A performance like this bolstered her leads in career ERA (0.92) and batting average against (.124).

What’s Up Next

Florida will have an early start on Saturday with a game against No. 19 Michigan starting at 10:30 a.m. The Gators will be right back on the diamond against No. 7 Arizona at 12:45 p.m.

UF pulled out wins in its last four games against the two schools. Tim Walton is also 242-104 against opponents ranked in the USA Today/NFCA Poll.

These two matchups can be heard over the radio waves on WGGG (92.1 FM/1230 AM) & WMOP (100.1 FM/900 AM).

About Jake Hitt

Check Also

NCAA Gainesville Super Regional: Gators Advance To Women’s College World Series

The No. 4 national seed Florida Gators softball team beat the unseeded Baylor Bears 5-3 …