The biggest issue that the Florida softball team has faced this season has been getting offensive production from players not named Amanda Lorenz or Kendyl Lindaman.
Coach Tim Walton has stressed multiple times this season that his team needs one more good hitter behind its two sluggers for it to be one of the best teams in the country.
Second baseman Hannah Adams was that “one more good hitter” on Wednesday night.
The sophomore went 3 for 3 at the plate with two RBIs to lead the No. 6 Gators to a 4-0 win over No. 4 Florida State (38-8) at JoAnne Graf Field at the Seminole Softball Complex in Tallahassee.
The win gives the Gators (37-9) their second win of the season against a top-five opponent. They’ll get a chance for more this weekend, as they host No. 5 Alabama, starting with a doubleheader Friday at 5 p.m.
Pitcher Kelly Barnhill shut out a Seminoles offense that ranked fifth in the nation in runs per game (7.4) coming into Wednesday’s game. The senior struck out nine batters, walked three and only gave up two hits, both of them to third baseman Sydney Sherrill.
Lorenz and Lindaman were held hitless in their first five at-bats, but the bottom half of the batting lineup picked up the slack.
First baseman Jordan Matthews’ RBI double in the top of the fourth inning scored the game-winning run, and Adams and shortstop Sophia Reynoso were a combined 6 for 7 at the plate.
Lindaman led off the fourth inning with a walk, and catcher Jordan Roberts followed with a single to left center. Matthews crushed FSU starter Makinzy Herzog’s 1-2 offering off the center-field wall, scoring pinch-runner Amanda Beane for the first run of the game.
Two batters later, Adams hit a double to left-center field to plate two more runners, increasing the lead to 3-0.
The Gators had several chances throughout the game to score more runs but struggled to hit with runners in scoring position, going 4 for 15.
But with Barnhill silencing the Seminoles’ offense, those four runs were all Florida needed.
UF tallied another run in the top of the seventh inning after Lorenz tripled to lead off the inning and scored on a Roberts RBI single.
Barnhill dished out a walk to begin the bottom of the seventh but retired the next three batters, including striking out catcher Anna Shelnutt to end the game.
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Shortstop Sophia Reynoso was 3 for 4 at the plate in Florida's 4-0 win over Florida State Wednesday.