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Thursday, June 01, 2023

Florida prevails against LSU, claims head coach Tim Walton’s 1,000th win

The Gators rebound from an early series loss with two-straight victories on the road

<p>Florida coach Tim Walton won his 1,000th game on Sunday against LSU.</p>

Florida coach Tim Walton won his 1,000th game on Sunday against LSU.

Florida softball bounced back from a near shutout in their first matchup against the Tigers to an unprecedented series victory Sunday, and head coach Tim Walton’s 1,000th win.

The No. 9 Gators (38-13, 13-11 SEC) defeated the No. 19 Tigers (32-19, 11-10 SEC) in dramatic fashion Sunday, 2-1.

Series action started Friday and LSU was in control from the first pitch, icing out the Gators, 9-1, at Tiger Park. The Tigers produced a season-high .515 batting average in just six innings.

LSU pitcher Ali Kilponen locked in from the circle, giving up just two hits and one run in the contest.

Florida avoided the shutout late in the sixth inning, as a groundout to second base set the scene for redshirt freshman Christina Wellen to score the Gators first run of the ballgame.

Despite a tough outing, Florida’s Friday scoring woes were left in the rearview Saturday as UF overpowered LSU, 6-1, to even the series.

The Gators tallied 12 hits and freshman pitcher Lexie Delbrey showed great poise from the circle, allowing just one run in six innings. 

Senior outfielder Cheyenne Lindsey opened up the scoring for the Gators with a series-shifting home run that gave the orange and blue a 1-0 lead. 

Sophomore outfielder Katie Kistler picked up the second run for Florida in the contest and Lindsey scored another run in the fourth.

Riding this momentum into Sunday’s series-clinching match, the Gators defeated the Tigers 2-1

UF scored the first run of the ball game at the top of the second, this time off another impressive score by Kistler.

With Florida leading 1-0, the Tigers wrestled back into the contest when fifth-year senior pitcher and utility Shelbi Sunseri singled to right field and allowed for redshirt sophomore utility Raeleen Gutierrez to score the equalizing run.

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Both teams were evenly matched, as the tight contest went to extra innings. 

Florida finally broke through in the top of the ninth with a home run to right field from Lindsey.

The Gators head to Tallahassee, Florida, for a top-10 matchup against No. 4 Florida State. The Seminoles handed Florida a loss at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium in early April, capturing a close victory 4-2.

This in-state rivalry is set to take place Wednesday at 6 p.m and can be watched live on ESPNU.

Contact Brenda Bogle at Follow her on Twitter @bogle_brenda.

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Brenda Bogle

Brenda Bogle is a UF journalism senior with a specialization in sports and media. She joined The Alligator in the Fall of 2021.

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