Updated: No. 6 Florida, No. 10 Louisiana split first two games of series

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[Cyndi Chambers/Correspondent]

Special to The Sun

No.6-ranked Florida shut out No. 10 Louisiana, 6-0, in the first game of a three-game series Friday night at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium.

The Gators (17-2) played solid defense, produced timely hits and received solid pitching performances from Natalie Lugo and Katie Chronister (1-0) for the convincing win over the Ragin’ Cajuns (12-5). Lugo hurled 3.1 innings and allowed three hits in her ninth start of the season, while Chronister effectively pitched the final 3.2 innings for her first win of the season.

Florida’s defense turned its first double play of the evening in the top of the 2nd inning. With runners on first and second with no outs, Cheyenne Lindsey streaked from her position in left field to snag a line drive off the bat of Melissa Mayeux and fired it to Hannah Adams at second to double up Sarah Hudek at second base.

With Ragin’ Cajun runners on the corners and one out in the 4th inning, UF turned its second double play when Charla Echols fielded a slow grounder at third and fired home to Julia Cottrill for the tag on Raina O’Neal. Cottrill made a heads up play and hurled the ball to Adams, who then snapped it to Reynoso to catch Taylor Roman in a pickle between second and third. 

Adams turned the third double play of the game in the 5th inning when she scooped up the slow rolling grounder off the bat of Julie Rawls, made the tag on Bailey Curry going from first to second, spun 360-degrees and whipped it over to Lindaman at first in time to end the inning. 

However, the defensive highlights were not over as Lindsey showed off her arm in left field to preserve the shutout. With a runner on second and two outs, Lindsey fielded a shot through the left side of the infield and mowed down Mayeux at home to end the 6th inning.

At the plate, Echols hit two RBI singles, while Reynoso and Cottrill had run-scoring singles and Lindaman hit a solo home run.

Louisiana wins Game 2

No.6-ranked Florida dropped a 7-5 decision to No. 10 Louisiana in the second game of the series Saturday at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium.

 The Gators (17-3) jumped ahead early, 4-0, over the Ragin’ Cajuns (13-5) in the top of the 1st inning thanks to four hits and an error committed by the Louisiana catcher.

 However, Louisiana responded in the top of the 2nd inning with five runs on four hits to go along with a pair of Florida defensive miscues. Rylee Trlicek (7-2) faced 11 batters over a 1.1 innings, before Elizabeth Hightower, Danni Farley and Katie Chronister took over the rest of the contest in the circle.

 Summer Ellyson (8-1) was rattled to start the game in the first, but the right-hander settled in to hurl another 5.0 innings before she gave way to Megan Kleist in the 7th frame for her second save of the season.

 Florida put on a rally in the 7th inning when pinch-hitter Baylee Goddard drew a leadoff hit-by-pitch, her 12th of the season, which was followed up by a sharply hit single from Cheyenne Lindsey. Adams set the table for Lindaman’s SAC fly when advanced the runners to second and third with her slow roller to first. Kleist closed the door when she forced Echols, the tying run, to popup on the infield for the final out.

 Offensively six different Gators notched a hit in today’s game, with RBI produced by Lindaman, Roberts and Cottrill.

Florida goes for the series win at 12 p.m. Sunday.