Florida Gators softball preview for opening SEC weekend

The No. 1 ranked Florida Gators softball team will take its 24-0 record into SEC play that starts this weekend around the country.

Florida, who will take an undefeated non-conference record into SEC play for the second straight year will open up on the road this weekend against the No. 3 ranked Auburn Tigers and their power lineup.

Florida is the only undefeated team in the SEC and one of only two teams in the country that are undefeated heading into conference play. UT Arlington is the other school.

This weekend matches the best pitching staff stat wise (Florida) versus the best offense stat wise (Auburn).

Here’s the schedule for this weekend’s game and all games will be on the SEC Network:

  • #1 Florida vs. #3 Auburn on Saturday at 8:30 P.M
  • #1 Florida vs. #3 Auburn on Sunday at 5:00 P.M
  • #1 Florida vs. #3 Auburn on Monday at 7:00 P.M

That’s a look at this weekend’s games but let’s dig a little deeper into this weekend’s opponent in our scouting report. Here’s a quick scouting report on the Florida Gators softball team as well.


Scouting the Florida Gators:

The Gators have outscored their opponents 171-12 during the 24-0 to start the season. Florida enters SEC play with a .984 fielding percentage which is third best in the country.

Amanda Lorenz comes in with the Gators best batting average at .468 and has scored 29 runs from the three-hole this year. Janell Wheaton is the Gators best power hitter this year with five home runs and 26 RBI’s in the cleanup spot.

Kayli Kvistad has turned her game up a notch and is now hitting in the five spot in the batting order. Kvistad now has three home runs and 24 RBI’s while hitting .429.

Every Gators starter except one is hitting over .300, including five that are over .400 on the year.

Also the Gators power numbers are coming back as Florida homered three times during its midweek series this week.

In the circle Delanie Gourley leads the team with a 9-0 record and a 0.44 ERA but is followed closely by Aleshia Ocasio who is 7-0 on the year. Gourley has one save while Ocasio has two saves and a 0.40 ERA this year.

Kelly Barnhill is 8-0 and also has a save while keeping an ERA of 0.93 during her freshman campaign.

Tim Walton has done a good job of rotating all three pitchers and all three have at least 60 strikeouts on the year.

Florida has the top ranked ERA in the country with a 0.58 average this year.

Scouting the Auburn Tigers:

Auburn enters conference play with a 22-1 record and the nations top offense in runs scored and batting average.

Tiffany Howard leads Auburn with a .545 batting average and has scored a team best 35 runs this year. Kasey Cooper provides the power for Auburn’s hot hitting team as she has seven long balls this year. Cooper leads the team with 36 RBI’s and has drawn 21 walks.

In total Auburn has four hitters with at least four home runs and has all but one starter hitting above .300 this year. Auburn is scoring 11 runs per game, which is top in the nation.

Auburn is pretty stingy in the circle and is second behind Florida in the country in that category.

Makayla Martin has an ERA of 0.41 and is 5-0 this year and Kaylee Carson is 5-0 with a 1.00 ERA.

Auburn uses five pitchers but much like Florida they only throw its top three in big games.

Stay tuned to GatorCountry.com all weekend for updates on the Gators softball team.

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Andrew Spivey
Andrew always knew he wanted to be involved with sports in some capacity. He began by coaching high school football for six years before deciding to pursue a career in journalism. While coaching, he was a part of two state semifinal teams in the state of Alabama. Given his past coaching experience, he figured covering recruiting would be a perfect fit. He began his career as an intern for Rivals.com, covering University of Florida football recruiting. After interning with Rivals for six months, he joined the Gator Country family as a recruiting analyst. Andrew enjoys spending his free time on the golf course and watching his beloved Atlanta Braves. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewSpiveyGC.