Softball

Defense wins championships and midweek matchups.

In a low-scoring affair, Florida beat Pennsylvania 3-1 on Tuesday afternoon at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium. The victory came two days after UF swept Auburn over the weekend to move to 3-0 in the SEC. With the win, the No. 7 Gators improved to 22-4 overall on the season.

Robust Return

Although it was not Florida’s most explosive day at the plate, it was a much-needed confidence boost for two of UF’s main batters. The first two batters in the lineup, junior Hannah Adams and senior Kendyl Lindaman, had a slower day at the plate on Sunday against Auburn, despite Florida scoring 11 runs.

But today, the Gators relied heavily on the two upperclassmen. All the runs today for Florida were off solo-shot homers from those two.

Adams had two, the first multi-home run effort of her entire career in orange and blue. It also doubled her home runs for the year. Lindaman’s homer notched her sixth of the season.

Just enough offense

The offense for UF was not quite as explosive as it was over the weekend against the Tigers outside of Lindaman and Adams. Florida averaged over six hits per game against Auburn and averaged just under six hits per game on the season heading into Tuesday’s contest. However, against the Quakers (7-6), the orange and blue scored around half of that at just three.

Why?

One huge reason was Penn’s senior pitcher, Jennifer Brann. The Houston native may not have completely dusted Florida, but she was smart in the circle all game.

She was conservative in her throws to keep the Gators at bay and not let the game get away from her team. While she gave up six hits and four walks, only three of those turned into runs against the Gators, whose bats have been hot recently.

Plenty of pitching

While Brann’s pitching was strong, Florida’s staff was better.

Sophomore Elizabeth Hightower started in the circle for the orange and blue. The Quakers were mostly ineffective against the right-hander, as she allowed just two hits and one run in her four innings of action.

Insert Natalie Lugo.

In the fifth inning, the junior from West Covina, California, replaced Hightower in the circle and slammed the door of hope shut on Penn. She allowed just two hits and no runs through her three innings of play, closing out the victory for the Gators.

Next up

UF has barely any time to enjoy this victory, as the Gators host in-state rival No. 12 Florida State Wednesday at 6 p.m.

Follow Graham on Twitter @GrahamMarshUF and contact him at [email protected].

Graham Marsh is the women's basketball and softball beat writer. He also covers football and men's basketball for Sports Illustrated's GatorMaven. Graham is a journalism senior at UF.