UF roundup: Gators fall to top-ranked Tar Heels in lacrosse

Special to Gatorsports.com

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — The eighth-ranked Florida lacrosse team battled all 60 minutes  Friday afternoon, but ultimately fell 11-5 to top-ranked North Carolina.

Redshirt freshman Sarah Reznick recorded 16 saves against the Tar Heels (2-0)top-ranked squad, tying the program record (Haley Hicklen - twice). The 16 saves bested Reznick's previous career-high of 14, which she recorded against the top-ranked Terrapins a season ago.

Grace Haus led the way offensively with three goals on the afternoon, her first hat trick of the season. Ashley Gonzalez notched her first collegiate goal in the game, while Shannon Kavanagh rounded out the scoring column for Florida (1-1) with one goal of her own.

Haus, Kavanagh and Brianna Harris each dished out an assist.

The draw circle was dead even, with each team registering nine draw controls in the game. Kavanagh led the way with five, while Harris and Emma Wightman recorded two apiece.

Cara Trombetta and Kaitlyn Dabkowski held UNC's scoring duo of Katie Hoag and Jamie Ortega to just 1-of-6 shooting in the game.

Haus, Trombetta and Becky Browndorf each caused a turnover against the Tar Heels, while Reznick and Kavanagh each picked up a team-high three groundballs.

The Florida-Kennesaw State game originally slated for Feb. 23 in Kennesaw, Ga. has been postponed in response to positive COVID-19 test results within the Kennesaw program. The teams will look to reschedule this game later on in the 2021 season.

The Gators return to action on Feb. 28 against No. 4 Loyola. Opening draw is set for 1 p.m. in Baltimore, Md.

Softball

 No. 6 Florida opened the Bubly Invitational with a 8-3 win over Georgia Southern on a damp Friday evening at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium.

The Gators (4-0) fell behind early 1-0 to the Eagles (0-1) in the top of the second inning on an uncharacteristic defensive miscue after a well-placed bunt was put down by Shayla Smith. Bailee Wilson scored on an error after a move from first to third base on the bunt.

Despite just the one hit and one unearned run in the first, senior Natalie Lugo (1-0) settled in to retired the next nine-straight Eagles hitters and give the Gators offense a chance to make a comeback.

The nation’s sixth-ranked team did just that in the fourth inning. Avery Goelz (1-for-2) picked up a one-out single to center field, but was retired on Kali Reis’ fielder’s choice to second. Reis moved into scoring position on a stolen base, which was followed up by an infield single from Cheyenne Lindsey (1-for-3) to turn the lineup over.

Hannah Adams (1-for-3) came through once again and gave the Gators the lead, 2-1, with a two-RBI single up the middle to score both Reis and Lindsey who advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch during Adams’ at-bat.

Kendyl Lindaman kept the rally going with a one-out walk and Charla Echols (3-for-4) blasted her second home run of the year to push the 5-1 over the Eagles.

In the top of the 5th inning, Lindsey made another highlight worthy play in deep center field as she tracked down a ball at the center field wall for the first out of the inning and spoiled the Eagles rally attempt.

The Gators will continue the Bubly Inviational on Saturday with games against Georgia Southern at 1 p.m. and Charlotte at 4 p.m.