Gators get back at Seminoles, 5-1

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    Florida ace Kelly Barnhill improved to 22-1 after the Gators' 5-1 Wednesday over Florida State at Pressly Stadium. [Lauren Bacho/Gainesville Sun]

    Chalk this one up to a pair of short-term memories.

    And maybe a homemade pie.

    Florida scored five runs in the sixth inning and Kelly Barnhill ran her record to 22-1, as the fifth-ranked Gators beat No. 8 Florida State 5-1 Wednesday in front of a crowd of 2,392 — the ninth largest — watched at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium.

    Barnhill shook off what could have been a critical error in the second inning and Amanda Lorenz scored the go-ahead run after her second hit of the game in the sixth. In both cases, it was all about forgetting.

    “It’s like throwing a bad pitch or giving up a home run,” Barnhill said. “You just have to focus on the next pitch and go pitch by pitch. I just really focused.”

    Barnhill’s throwing error gave FSU (39-9) runners on second and third with nobody out. But she sandwiched two strikeouts around a pop up on a bunt attempt to get out of the inning.

    “That was the best response I’ve seen Kelly have in her career,” said Florida coach Tim Walton. “She didn’t over-do it. She pitched the way she’s capable of pitching.”

    Barnhill shut the Seminoles out until a solo homer by Jessie Warren in the seventh. But by then Florida (42-7) had a 5-0 lead.

    Lorenz, who celebrated her 21st birthday Wednesday, led off the sixth with a sharp single up the middle. For Lorenz, it was her second straight hit after striking out badly in the first inning.

    “You just have to have a short-term memory,” she said. “That probably doesn’t happen in my freshman year.”

    Lorenz went to second on a wild pitch and scored the first run of the game on Nicole DeWitt’s double just out of the reach of FSU center fielder Morgan Klaevemann.

    “The one thing that’s kind of overlooked was the way Amanda ran the bases on that play,” Walton said. “She didn’t run back to the base and panic.”

    Lorenz had already received a birthday present from Barnhill earlier in the day — a blueberry, blackberry and strawberry pie.

    “It was amazing,” Lorenz said.

    But the best was yet to come.

    Florida scored again after a walk and an infield single when Janell Wheaton singled just out of the reach of both the shortstop and third baseman. Sophia Reynoso then hit a bouncer down the third base line that glanced off the glove of Warren and cleared the bases.

    “I was just hoping it would stay fair,” Reynoso said. “It was good enough to get some runs on the board.”

    Barnhill gave up the seventh-inning homer, but then struck out the side to end it giving her 10 for the game.

    And give Lorenz the gift she really wanted.

    “A win,” she said after being serenaded with “Happy Birthday” by the crowd and her teammates. “That’s it. Two hits just tops off the cake.”

    Florida will be back in action Friday with a three-game series against LSU.

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