A day after junior pitcher Hannah Rogers had a no-hitter revoked after a victory, the Gators pitching staff combined for a perfect game.
All three of No. 4 Florida’s (22-1) hurlers got a chance to pitch in the team’s final game in the University of Florida Tournament against Presbyterian (8-8), and none of them allowed a base runner in the Gators’ 11-0 win.
“When you look at things, karma works,” coach Tim Walton said.
“I think you could say what you want about a no-hitter or not a no-hitter, but now they come out and throw a perfect game combined. It’s good stuff.”
Rogers started for the Gators and came out of the dugout dealing. In her first two innings, she struck out five batters. She pitched well in the third, setting the Blue Hose batters down in order before leaving the game.
“I think [Walton] was just trying to give everybody a chance to pitch before we actually went on the road,” Rogers said.
Sophomore Lauren Haeger replaced Rogers in the circle and pitched an easy inning, getting a pop up and two groundouts on six pitches. Fellow sophomore Alyssa Bache pitched the fifth and picked up a strikeout and two fly outs to end the game.
“None of us even realized it until Alyssa was pitching the last inning,” Haeger said. “I looked at the board, and I was like, ‘That’s zero, zero, zero. Oh my gosh.’”
But while the Florida pitching staff was dominating Presbyterian batters, the offense was producing as well.
Florida opened the game with three runs in the first inning on a sacrifice fly by sophomore Briana Little, a bases-loaded walk to freshman Taylor Schwarz and an RBI single by sophomore Katie Medina.
The Gators tacked on four more runs in the second inning on a home run by Haeger, consecutive triples by Little and senior Kelsey Horton and a run-scoring groundout by Stephanie Tofft.
With the game well in hand, Florida scored four more runs in the third and fourth innings. Haeger picked up her third and fourth RBI in the final innings. The third came on a double to right-center field that scored Bailey Castro, and the final RBI was on a line-drive single up the middle.
“I was just going up there hacking,” Haeger said. “When I have, good things happen.”
The Gators will travel to Tuscaloosa, Ala., to begin Southeastern Conference play against No. 1 Alabama (22-0) on Wednesday.
Contact Adam Lichtenstein at email@example.com.