No. 3 Florida Tops Auburn Softball 5-2
April 15, 2012
Gainesville, Fla. -
The third-ranked Florida Gators used a two-out rally in the fifth inning to claim a 5-2 win over the Auburn softball team Sunday afternoon.
Auburn's record dropped to 26-18 overall and 5-14 in the Southeastern Conference with the loss. Florida improved to 38-5 overall and 18-2 in the SEC. Auburn returns to action next weekend when the Arkansas Razorbacks come to Jane B. Moore Field for a three-game series.
"Florida got the hits when they needed them," Auburn head coach Tina Deese said. "We did a good job against their hitters for the most part, but we just couldn't get out of that fifth inning and they were able to put up a few runs. We were able to score in the seventh but couldn't keep the rally going."
Angel Bunner started and took the loss, falling to 11-4. Bunner allowed four runs, all earned, on five hits with two walks and no strikeouts in four and two-thirds innings. Lauren Schmalz pitched the final one and one-third innings, allowing one run, unearned, on one hit with two walks, two strikeouts and one hit batter.
Hannah Rogers earned the complete-game win to improve to 22-3. Rogers allowed two runs, both earned, on six hits with three walks and five strikeouts.
The Tigers put two runners on the in the third and fourth innings, but were unable to push a run across the plate. In the third inning, Branndi Melero drew a two-out walk and then took second on a single up the middle by Lauren Guzman. Rogers was able to end the scoring the threat when she forced Amber Harrison to pop-up to shortstop.
In the fourth inning, Caitlin Schultze drew a one-out walk but was out at second on a fielder's choice ground ball off the bat of Elizabeth Eisterhold. With two outs, Brooke Lathan singled to center to move Eisterhold into scoring position at second base. Rogers again worked out of a jam when she fanned pinch-hitter Lauren Schmalz on a called third strike.
Florida jumped on the scoreboard with four runs, all with two outs, in the bottom of the fifth inning. Ensley Gammel reached on a leadoff single and moved to second on a sac bunt. After a fly out, Gammel took third on a passed ball. Bunner pitched around Michelle Moultrie for a walk to put runners on the corners. After Moultrie stole second, Sami Fagan laced a double to left to score both runners for a 2-0 Florida lead.
With Fagan at second, Lauren Haeger crushed a home run to left-center to give Florida a 4-0 lead. Haeger's home run chased Bunner from the game and brought Schmalz in to pitch. Schmalz walked the first batter she faced, Cheyenne Coyle, before ending the inning on a ground out to second base.
The Gators added a run in the bottom of the sixth. Jess Damico led off with a single and moved to third when Schmalz threw wildly to first on a sac bunt by Gammel, who took second on the play. Schmalz fanned Katie Medina for the first out of the inning, but Kasey Fagan delivered a sac fly to center that plated Damico for a 5-0 UF lead. With two outs, Moultrie was hit by a pitch and Sami Fagan drew a walk to load the bases. Schmalz ended the inning on a called third strike on Haeger to leave the bases loaded.
In the seventh, Eisterhold drew a leadoff walk and was lifted for pinch-runner Kristyn Richards. Lathan followed with a double to center that put runners at third and second with no outs. After Rogers forced Schmalz to ground out for the first out of the inning, McKenzie Kilpatrick hit a high chopper to second for an infield single which scored Richards from third to make it a 5-1 game.
Lathan took third on the play and Maris Medina was put in to run for Kilpatrick at first. Melero followed with a ground ball deep in the hole at short that scored Lathan. Medina was out at second on the fielder's choice. With score 5-2, Guzman laced a single to right but was thrown out attempting to stretch the play to a double for the final out of the game.
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