TAMPA – The Florida softball team opened its season Friday with a 15-0 win over Illinois State at the USF Opening Weekend Invitational.
The Gators belted 13 hits and were led by senior Amanda Lorenz, who went 3-for-4 at the plate with three RBI and a run scored.
The Gators (1-0) lineup produced in a big way throughout the game, but the initial inning set the tone against the Redbirds (0-2). Florida struck for four runs on four hits, with back-to-back hits from sophomore Hannah Adams and Lorenz put UF ahead 4-0.
From there UF went on to score 11 more runs over the next four innings; the onslaught was finally capped off by a three-run home run in the top of the fifth by shortstop Sophia Reynoso.
In the circle, senior hurler Kelly Barnhill went 3.0 innings to pick up her 71st career win. Sophomore Natalie Lugo pitched an inning in relief along with freshman Danni Farley, who made her UF debut. The pitching staff as a whole only relinquished the one hit and struck out a total of eight batters. Also, no walks were issued in the game.
The 15-0 win to open the season is the fifth consecutive opening day shutout and the third largest margin of victory to start a season.
The Gators return to action Saturday morning to take on No. 19 Michigan at 10:30 a.m. and No. 7 Arizona at 12:45 a.m.
Swimming and diving: At Auburn Invitational, Dillon Hillis and Drew Clark each collected a win to pace the Florida on day one. Clark won the 500 Free with a 4:24.84. Hillis recorded a personal-best time of 1:47.45 in the 200 IM final
The Auburn Invitational continues Saturday at 10:30 a.m.
Baseball: Twenty-three former Florida baseball players are scheduled to participate in Saturday’s Alumni Scrimmage at 6 p.m. at McKethan Stadium. Batting practice will begin at 3:50 p.m. with first pitch at 6 p.m. Admission is free.
Fans will have an opportunity to take photos with the 2017 national championship trophy and 2018 SEC championship trophy. Schedule cards and posters for the 2019 season will be available as well as games and activities for fans on the concourse. The scrimmage will be a full nine innings. Current UF players may fill in vacant positions on the Alumni roster as needed.
Lacrosse: No. 6 Florida makes its 2019 season debut at No. 17 Colorado starting at 2 p.m. ET today. This is the third meeting between the schools, with the Gators holding the 2-0 series advantage. Both wins came last season, with UF winning the season opener, 16-9, then topping the Buffs, 13-9, in the NCAA Tournament.
Indoor Track and Field: Junior all-around sensation Grant Holloway was at it again, and Florida’s distance corps put together some impressive performances of its own, as the Gators competed at both the Tyson Invitational in Fayetteville, Ark., and Iowa State Classic.
Holloway clocked a world-leading 60-meter hurdles time of 7.43 seconds, also just one hundredth of a second off his own collegiate record. The Chesapeake, Va., native now owns three of the five fastest times in collegiate history, as well as six of the 11 fastest times in collegiate history.
Florida’s AJ McFarland won the men’s weight throw at the Tyson with a toss of 22.19 meters (72 feet, 9.75 inches)