Florida Gators softball defeats South Carolina on senior day

A special report on the Florida Gators softball team from the UAA:

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – No. 3 Florida bounced back to defeat South Carolina, 6-0, Saturday on Senior Day at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium. Jordan MatthewsKendyl LindamanKatie Chronister and Jaimie Hoover were recognized prior to today’s game.

The Gators (34-7, 13-4 SEC) blasted three home runs en route to the victory over the Gamecocks (24-19, 3-14 SEC). Hannah Adams (2-for-4), Charla Echols (1-for3) and Hoover (1-for-3) each went yard in the effort, which is the first time this season that UF has hit three home runs in a game.

In the circle, Natalie Lugo (12-1) turned in her first complete-game performance of the season to help even the series. The West Covina, Calif. native only allowed four hits and one walk, while she struck out five in the winning effort.

The first homer came in the 1st inning of action from Adams. Florida was able to take the lead, 1-0, via a leadoff home run from Adams. The recently announced USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Top 25 Finalist, blasted the 1-1 offering from South Carolina starter Leah Powell (8-3) well over the right center field wall.

The Gators extended their lead out to 4-0 in the following frame. Hoover, the fifth-year senior, pushed it out to 3-0 with a two-run home run over the left field wall. Hoover scored Julia Cottrill, who reached with a leadoff single off the glove of first baseman Kassidy Krupit, with her third homer of the season.

UF pushed the lead out to 4-0 when Sarah Longley scored from third on a throwing error made by second baseman Mackenzie Boesel in an attempt to retire Adams at first base.

Echols capped the scoring and pushed the Gators lead out to 6-0 via her 11th home run of the season in the 5th inning. The two-run blast to center field off of reliever Bailey Betenbaugh scored Cheyenne Lindsey, who reached with a one-out single through right side of the Gamecocks infield.

Florida and South Carolina will meet once more to play for the series Sunday at 1 p.m. (ET). The game set to be streamed via the SEC Network +.

Notable Notes:

  • The Gators improved their record in the all-time series with the Gamecocks to 51-21.
    • Record When:
      • Scoring first: 29-1
      • Hitting a home run: 23-2
      • Scoring 6+ runs: 17-1
      • On television: 7-2
  • Tonight’s three home runs was the first time the Gators have hit three home runs in a game this season and the first time since Penn (March 10, 2020).
  • Natalie Lugo turned in her first complete-game shutout of the season and now holds a 0.98 ERA in Southeastern Conference play with a 6-1 record in league action.
  • Hannah Adams and Charla Echols extended their reached base streaks to 26 and 23 games respectively.
    • Adams has reached base safely in 40 of the 41 games played this season.
  • Julia Cottrill and Adams are both now on four-game hit streaks.
  • Jaimie Hoover’s two-run home run was her third multi-RBI game of the season, while Echols’ two-run shot was her 10th multi-RBI game of the year.
  • Sarah Longley’s multi-hit game was the first of her career. She went 2-for-3 at the plate with a double that hit off the top of the center field wall.
Bailiegh Carlton
A lifelong sports fan, Bailiegh Carlton knew from a young age that she wanted to work in sports in some capacity. Before transferring to the University of Florida to study journalism, she played softball at Gulf Coast State College. She then interned for Gator Country for three years as she worked toward her degree. After graduation, Bailiegh decided to explore other opportunities in the world of sports, but all roads led her right back here. In her time away, she and her husband welcomed a beautiful baby girl into the world. When she isn't working, she can almost always be found snuggled up with sweet baby Ridley, Cody and her four fur babies.