No. 1 Florida softball powers way to semifinals of Women’s College World Series

By Adam Silverstein
June 2, 2017
No. 1 Florida softball powers way to semifinals of Women’s College World Series
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Image Credit: ESPN

No. 1 Florida Gators softball advanced to the semifinals of the 2017 Women’s College World Series on Friday night after shutting out and rolling the No. 13 LSU Tigers 7-0.

In the WCWS for the eighth time in the last 10 seasons, Florida has held its first two opponents scoreless, previously defeating the No. 9 Texas A&M Aggies 8-0 on Thursday afternoon.

Sophomore right-handed pitcher Kelly Barnhill (7.0 IP, 2 H, 3 BB, 8 K) picked up her second victory in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, tossing a two-hitter thanks to some tremendous defense by her teammates.

Considered the visitors on Friday, the Gators initially crossed the plate in the top of the fourth with a two-RBI double by senior right fielder Chelsea Herndon.

A solo homer by junior catcher Janell Wheaton in the sixth provided UF its first insurance run, and Florida knocked in four more in the seventh. Sophomore left fielder Amanda Lorenz registered an RBI single and was immediately followed by junior first baseman Kayli Kvistad, who rocketed a two-run shot to right. Wheaton then scored another on a sacrifice fly.

Lacking offense during the start of 2017 NCAA Tournament play in Gainesville, Florida, the Gators have certainly found it in Oklahoma City, outscoring their two opponents a combined 15-0.

Florida will face Washington in semifinal action on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET. As the Gators are 2-0 and it is a double-elimination tournament, should they fall in that game, an elimination contest would be held at 7 p.m. with the winner advancing to the WCWS Championship Series.

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