During the Gators' game against the Stetson Hatters on Wednesday, March 29, 2023 at Katie Seashole Pressly Softball Stadium in Gainesville, FL / UAA Communications photo by Ashley Ray

Gators Softball Begins Regional Play Against LMU

Gators softball will play their first game of the Stanford Regional against Loyola Marymount Friday night. Florida is coming off of a second round exit in the SEC Tournament to Tennessee. This west coast region includes the Gators, LMU, Stanfordย and Long Beach State. First pitch for the game is set for 6 p.m.

Gators Looking to Dominate

Florida’s softball team comes into the NCAA tournament with a 4-4 record in neutral site matchups. They’ll face an LMU squad that has yet to beat a top 25 team in the nation. However, the Gators have struggled with pitching all season long. Hitting the ball and scoring runs will be the priority for the team to secure the victory.

For the Gators,ย Skylar Wallace has been nothing short of sensational this season. In fact, she was recently announced as one of the three USA Softball Player of the Year Finalists. She finished with a .460 batting average and 19 home runs for the regular season, earning SEC Player of the Year honors.

Wallace will be the X-factor for the Gators in this regional round of the tournament. If the team defeats LMU, they’ll have a tough test against Stanford on The Cardinal’s home turf or Long Beach State.

LMU Faces a Challenge

Loyola Marymount had an impressive season, winning the West Coast Conference. They ended with a 27-20 record and had players and personnel winning awards all across the board. The Lions head coach, Tairia Flowers, won the WCC Coach of the year.

Flowers joined SportScene to discuss the teams success and terrific pitching.

The key player on this squad has been Jenna Perez, who earned the WCC Pitcher of the Year award. She finished with an ERA of 2.09 and dominated the conference all season. However, she’ll be up against talented hitters that face SEC pitchers on a weekly basis. This will be the determining factor for whether the Lions can pull off the upset. If the Gators struggle to pitch, the Lions must take advantage on the offensive end.

About Daniel Haviv

Hello, my name is Daniel Haviv and I'm a junior sports journalism student at the University of Florida. As a sports writer, I have published content on a multitude of different sports across all levels. Additionally, I was a beat reporter for the Gators Men's Basketball team for the 2022-2023 season. Game-day previews and post-game articles are featured.

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