Final: Florida 10, UNF 2 (5)
Win: Rylee Trlicek (2-0)
Loss: Hailey Raulerson (0-2)
Gainesville, FL – The 8th ranked Florida Gators hosted the UNF Ospreys on Wednesday night in a non-conference showdown. Florida entered the game with a 4-1 record, coming off an exhibition loss to Team USA on Tuesday night. Meanwhile, UNF carried a 2-2 record into the game after competing in the Trojan Classic this past weekend in Troy, Alabama. It marks the fourth straight year Florida and North Florida have met, and UF held a 9-0 all-time record versus UNF entering the game.
The Gators needed just five innings to knock off UNF by virtue of the 8-run rule. Florida wasted no time getting its bats going as they hit through the entire lineup and scored seven runs in the first inning. Senior slugger Jordan Roberts got things started when she smashed a 3-run homer to dead center.
After recording just one out, Hailey Raulerson was pulled from the circle in favor of freshman Alyssa Dyhr. Dyhr pitched the next 2.1 innings, allowing 5 earned runs on 8 hits and 4 walks.
Florida starting pitcher, Rylee Trlicek, cruised through UNF’s lineup the first time around, but she ran into trouble in the third. After the first two batters had reached base, Kayla McGory ripped a 2-RBI double to left-field wall. Unfortunately for the Ospreys, McGory’s double would be their final hit of the night.
The Gators responded in the bottom half of the inning as Julia Cottrill drove in Kendyl Lindaman to extend their lead to 9-2. Cottrill had herself a night to remember, going 3-3 with two runs batted in.
In the top of the fourth, Elizabeth Hightower made her third appearance of the season as she entered the circle for the Gators. Hightower pitched a solid last two innings, striking out two batters while allowing no runs on no hits and two walks.
The 8-run rule came into play following Baylee Goddard’s bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the fourth. In the top half of the fifth, Florida didn’t allow any runs, which secured the run-rule victory.
With the win, Florida improves to 5-1 on the season, while UNF drops to 2-3.
- Florida head coach, Tim Walton, is now one win shy of 900 career wins
- Jordan Roberts (1-3, 3 RBIs, 2 Runs) hit her team-leading 4th home run
- Julia Cottrill (3-3, 2 RBIs) improved her season batting average to .471
The Gators will look to carry their momentum into the weekend as they prepare for a busy upcoming schedule. Florida hosts the Bubly Invitational, which starts on Friday, and will play six games in just three days. The Gators will play North Dakota State (twice), Longwood (twice), Southeastern Louisiana and Florida A&M.
When asked about how Florida will manage its pitching rotation during the busy stretch, head coach, Tim Walton, said the team will “definitely be using all six pitchers.” That includes senior pitcher Katie Chronister, who has faced only three batters so far this season. Walton went on to mention how he was “glad not to use Natalie [Lugo]” against UNF in hopes of getting her some rest before the busy weekend ahead.
As for UNF, the team will look to bounce back this weekend as they head to Jacksonville for their home opener and the start of the Osprey Invitational. UNF will face Alabama A&M (twice), Ball State (twice) and East Tennessee State.