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Rylee Trlicek winds up to pitch the ball in the Gator softball team's win over Central Michigan on Feb. 19. Photo courtesy of Ashley Ray.

Gators Softball Evens Up Series With Arkansas In 11-4 Victory

After a series-opening loss to the Arkansas Razorbacks on Friday, the Florida Gator softball team got its revenge on Saturday night. The number 10 Gators took care of business against the number 17 Razorbacks in an 11-4 victory to even up the series at 1-1.

Florida tallied up 11 total hits with Charla Echols leading the Gators with five RBIs and two hits on the day, including a first-inning home run. She went on to drive in three runs on a sixth-inning double to put Florida in the driver’s seat for good. Sarah Longley knocked out a home run of her own in the fourth inning to score three runs for UF.

Lexie Delbrey got the start in the circle for the Gators, but Rylee Trlicek ended up with the win. Delbrey pitched for the first three innings, and she allowed four hits, four runs (three earned) and three walks. Trlicek then relieved her and took over for the final four innings. She only allowed one hit, zero walks and zero runs. Delbrey also struck out five batters along the way.

Arkansas Holds Their Ground Early On

The Gators immediately made some noise at the plate in the first inning. After Reagan Walsh landed on first via a walk, Echols blasted out a home run over the center field fence to give Florida a 2-0 lead.

However, the Razorbacks swiftly responded in the bottom of the first. After landing runners on first and second via a single and a walk, respectively, Arkansas eventually drove in two runs on a deep single into left field. In spite of UF’s strong start at the plate, the score remained tied 2-2 after one inning.

The Razorbacks proceeded to claim the lead in the bottom of the second inning. After the Gators went down 1-2-3 in the top of the second, Arkansas loaded the bases and scored on a hit-by-pitch. Delbrey got the situation back under control with a ground out in the following at-bat, but the Razorbacks had jumped out to a 3-2 lead.

Gators Take Control Later In The Evening

After an uneventful third inning for both squads, Florida regained control in inning number four. Olivia Gigante knocked a single into right and Sam Roe reached first on a walk to lead off the inning. Two at-bats later, Longley blasted a bomb into center field to give UF a 5-3 lead.

Arkansas responded with a pair of singles to drive in another run, but Florida held on to a 5-4 lead at the end of the inning. Neither team could tack on any runs in the fifth inning, but the Gators offense came to life in the sixth. Roe led off for Florida with a single; she was followed up by Kendra Falby reaching first on an error.

The Gators picked up two outs in the following two at-bats. However, Emily Wilkie managed to load the bases on a hit-by pitch. Skylar Wallace and Walsh then drove in a pair of runs via a walk and a hit-by-pitch, respectively. Echols then belted a double into left center to drive in all three runners on base.

From there, the Gators sailed to victory with ease. Echols eventually scored on a wild pitch to extend Florida’s lead to 11-4 by the end of the sixth inning. While UF dominated in the batter’s box, Trlicek continued taking care of business in the circle. She did not allow a single Razorback to reach base in the final three innings of play. Florida eventually clinched the win following another shutout inning for Trlicek, capping off an all-around fantastic day.

The Gators will go for the series victory Sunday at 1 p.m. at Bogle Park in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

About Jack Meyer

Jack Meyer is a third-year student at the University of Florida. He is majoring in Journalism and specializing in Sports and Media.

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