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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Rothrock delivers, helps Gators take Game 3 over Missouri

Florida defeated the Tigers 3-1

Florida softball freshman right-handed pitcher Keagan Rothrock pitches the ball in the Gators' loss to Oklahoma State on Monday, February 19, 2024.
Florida softball freshman right-handed pitcher Keagan Rothrock pitches the ball in the Gators' loss to Oklahoma State on Monday, February 19, 2024.

Florida freshman pitcher Keagan Rothrock has established herself as UF’s ace in her first collegiate season.

Rothrock has been one of the Gators’ standout performers, holding an 18-6 record with a 1.99 ERA.

She took the circle for the second time in Florida’s three-game series against Missouri  Sunday and was near-flawless.

The freshman threw her 15th complete game of the season, only giving up one hit and one run while leading the No. 9 Gators (35-9, 10-5 SEC) to a 3-1 Game 3 victory over No. 14 Missouri (33-11, 7-8 SEC).

The win snapped Florida’s season-long losing streak at three games and prevented the first potential series sweep of UF’s season.

Despite the win Sunday, the Gators lost the overall series at Mizzou 2-1, their first series defeat this season.

Florida took control of the game in the second inning when junior designated hitter Reagan Walsh led off the inning with a double.

That was followed by freshman first baseman Ava Brown, who launched a two-run shot over the center field wall to give the Gators a 2-0 lead.

It was Brown’s 10th homer of the season, and ultimately, the shot would be the winning hit.

Florida extended its lead in the fifth inning when sophomore catcher Jocelyn Erickson scorched an RBI single that drove in redshirt senior shortstop Skylar Wallace.

It was Erickson’s team-high 54th RBI of the season, while also being Wallace’s 61st scored run of the season, also a team-high.

The Tigers got on the board in the bottom of the fifth on a groundout by junior outfielder Mya Dodge who scored freshman outfielder Danielle Blackstun.

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Ultimately, Rothrock shut the door on Mizzou, earning the hard-fought victory for her team.

Florida will now return home to host No. 21 South Carolina in a three-game series which will start Friday at 6 p.m.

Contact Max Bernstein at mbernstein@alligator.org. Follow him on X @maxbernstein23.

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