In this file photo, Florida's Amanda Lorenz bats against Missouri in March. Lorenz went 2-for-3 with a pair of RBIs Sunday against Georgia.
Gators clinch series over Georgia
Third-ranked Florida jumped out to a 4-0 lead over No. 18 Georgia after two innings and the combination of a stout defense with the clutch pitching of senior left-hander Delanie Gourley enabled the Gators to clinch the series with a 4-1 win Sunday before a Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium crowd of 1,712.
Gourley threw a complete game, scattering eight hits while striking out nine Bulldogs and walking just one to improve to 13-2 on the season, while Georgia starter Mary Wilson Avant could only make it through 1.2 innings and took the loss to fall to 5-5.
“Delanie came out and struck out the first six batters in the first two innings and did a really good job of mixing up her pitches and get them chasing pitches out of the zone early,” UF coach Tim Walton said. “We played situational softball the way we were supposed to when we had the chance. We just didn't get enough runners to do much.”
The Gators (36-2, 12-1) scored in their first at-bat, with leadoff hitter Amanda Lorenz doubling to left field to start the inning.
She took third on Nicole DeWitt's fielder's choice, then scored on Kayli Kvistad's sacrifice fly to deep left.
UF added three more runs in the second, scoring them all with two outs.
Janell Wheaton reached on a fielder's choice, and Justine McLean, Sophia Reynoso and Lorenz each followed with singles, with Reynoso's hit scoring Wheaton, and Lorenz bringing home both McLean and Reynoso to make it 4-0.
Georgia (27-12, 2-9) cut the lead to 4-1 in the fifth, but Gourley escaped further damage by striking out Brea Dickey with two outs and the bases loaded.
“They are a really good team,” Gourley said. “I did what I could to keep us on top, and our defense and our offense worked really well to keep us there and get a good win.”
UF's Wheaton, who threw out two Georgia runners in Saturday's 5-0 Gator win, came up with another big throw in the top of the third to get Cortni Emanuel attempting to steal second.
Gourley was able to retire the next two hitters on line drives to second and first, respectively, to keep the Bulldogs off the board.
Georgia was able to plate a run, their first of the weekend, in the top of the fifth, but Gourley came through in the clutch, striking out Dickey with the bases loaded and two outs.
Kylie Bass worked the final 4.1 innings for the Bulldogs and allowed just two hits.
"Delanie pitched really, really well tonight,” Wheaton said. “All her pitches were moving, and her change-up was really effective. I thought she really did her job.”
Lorenz and Wheaton each went 2-for-3 at the plate to pace the Gators, who will go for the series sweep tonight at 7.
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