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Monday, March 20, 2023

Florida fails to find home plate in loss to Oregon in Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic

Gators softball struggled to score over Oregon’s dominance

Florida infielder Kaila Pollard swings her bat in the Gators' win against the Jacksonville Dolphins Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2023.
Florida infielder Kaila Pollard swings her bat in the Gators' win against the Jacksonville Dolphins Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2023.

Florida fell short on offense Saturday afternoon against Oregon. The Gators nearly scored two home runs in the game, but the Ducks held strong and kept the Gators scoreless. 

Oregon’s defense made countless diving grabs, and the Gators couldn’t get the ball high enough to go over the fence. 

The No. 3 Florida Gators (11-2) were defeated by the No. 24 Oregon Ducks (10-3) 8-0 Saturday afternoon. The defeat gave the Gators their second loss of the season and of the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic. 

Graduate student right-handed pitcher Elizabeth Hightower started the game on the circle for Florida. Shortly into the game, Ducks fifth-year infielder Allee Bunker homered to left center for two runs batted in; she brought junior outfielder Hanna Delgado home to give Oregon a 2-0 lead in the top of the first. 

Graduate student third baseman Charla Echols nearly hit a home run, but Oregon outfielder Hanna Delgado caught the ball after it bounced off the wall. The Gators were left scoreless after the first inning. 

Hightower and the Gators’ defense kept the Ducks from extending their lead in the top of the second. Oregon sophomore right-handed pitcher Stevie Hansen kept Florida scoreless to end the second. 

Ducks junior infielder KK Humphreys pushed Oregon’s lead to 3-0 after she homered to right field at the top of the third. The Ducks continued to shut out the Gators through the bottom of the third. 

Oregon redshirt senior catcher Terra McGowan homered to right field to extend Oregon's lead to 5-0. Florida replaced Hightower with senior left-handed pitcher Rylee Trlicek, who didn’t allow a run in the top of the fifth. Florida continued its offensive struggles and ended the fifth inning without a run. 

Trlicek kept the Ducks at bay in the top of the sixth. The Gators were up to bat but saw no success. Senior outfielder Ariel Carlson caught a near home run by freshman infielder Kaila Pollard to end the sixth inning. 

McGowan singled down the right-field line to allow fifth-year outfielder Kyla Morris to score and up Oregon’s lead to 6-0. Bunker homered to left center to bring Delgado home and give the Ducks an 8-0 advantage.

Oregon held Florida scoreless through all seven innings to give the Gators their second loss of the week.

UF is set to continue their Saturday doubleheader in the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic against Cal State Fullerton at 4 p.m. The game will be streamed on FloSports.  

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Contact Alyssa Britton-Harr Follow her on Twitter @abrittonharr.

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Alyssa Britton-Harr

Alyssa Britton-Harr is a first-year journalism major and the softball reporter for The Aligator. When not writing, you can see her cheering on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, going to country concerts, and spending time with her friends.

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