The No. 4 Florida softball team defeated North Florida 3-1 on Wednesday night, the first home game of the regular season at newly-renovated Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium.
The Gators (6-0) were led by a strong performance in the circle from sophomore right-handed pitcher Natalie Lugo (2-0), who threw a season-high six innings with five strikeouts. Lugo only allowed one earned run and two hits. Kelly Barnhill came into the game in the seventh inning to earn her second save of the season. Lugo and Barnhill combined to give up only one walk and two hits across seven innings.
At the plate, Hannah Sipos and Kendyl Lindaman led the Gators with two hits each, while Jaimie Hoover, Jordan Matthews, Alex Voss and Jordan Roberts all contributed with a hit apiece.
Lindaman got things started in the first inning for the Gators with a double to left field that scored Amanda Lorenz, and thanks to a strong performance from pitching and the defense, the Gators never looked back.
The Gators now travel to Tempe, Ariz. for five games in the Littlewood Classic starting Friday through Sunday. UF plays Illinois State at 4 p.m. and Arizona State at 9 p.m. EST on Friday.
Lacrosse: No. 6 Florida is not playing a cupcake to start its home schedule, as the Gators (1-0) host No. 2 Maryland (1-0) at 7 p.m. Thursday at Donald R. Dizney Stadium.
This is the fifth meeting between the teams, with Maryland holding the 4-0 series advantage. Last season’s matchup was decided by just two goals, with the Terps winning 16-14.
“We just want them to have composure,” UF coach Amanda O’Leary said of her Gators. “We have played this team numerous times, so the big thing for them is recognizing where our strengths lie and playing to our strengths. We need not to focus on Maryland and focus on ourselves at this point.”
Indoor Track and Field: Senior jumper Yanis David and junior all-around athlete Grant Holloway nabbed SEC weekly awards for the second and third time, respectively, this week. David was named the Women’s Field Athlete of the Week, while Holloway was the Men’s Runner of the Week.
David opened her triple jump season at the Tyson Invitational with the nation’s No. 6-ranked mark (13.33 meters / 43 feet, 8.75 inches). The Lamentin, Guadeloupe native also posted a mark of 6.35 meters (20 feet, 10 inches), which would have been good for seventh nationally were she not already tied for the NCAA lead.
Holloway clocked a world-leading time of 7.43 second in the 60-meter hurdles, the second-fastest time in collegiate history and just one hundredth of a second off his collegiate record. The Chesapeake, Va., native now owns three of the five fastest times and six of the 11 fastest times in collegiate history.