Softball sweeps Florida A&M, 11-3 (6) & 7-1

April 4, 2007

Box Score

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - After dropping three games in a row, the JU softball team got back in the win column with a doubleheader sweep over Florida A&M, 11-3 (6) & 7-1, on Wednesday night at Lady Rattlers Field in Tallahassee, Fla.

The Dolphins (13-30) slugged out 17 hits at the plate and fanned 11 batters in the circle to earn the sweep, while the Rattlers (9-33) have lost their last four games.

"We played very well tonight," said JU head coach Amanda Lehotak. "We needed those victories after the losses last weekend. Now, we have to take this momentum into Friday against North Florida to gain some leverage in the conference and SunTrust River City Rumble Standings."

Offensively, sophomore Alexis Novak led the Dolphins after driving in four runs in the doubleheader. Pat Melo went 4-for-8 with two runs and three RBI, while junior Jillian Mirante tallied her second consecutive inside-the-park home run in game one.

Freshman Ashley Ivseon (5-8) earned the win in game one after tallying a team-high eight strikeouts. She allowed three runs on six hits in four innings, while Shannon Jensen surrendered one hit in two innings of relief.

Senior Katie Buell (4-7) allowed one unearned run on three hits to earn the win in game two.

In game one, the Dolphins gained a 3-0 lead with the help of RBI hits by Mirante and Shannon Jensen.

Mirante hit a one-out inside the park home run to center field to give the Dolphins a 1-0 advantage, while Jensen capped off the inning with a two-run single to score Novak and Sara Gordon.

The Rattlers answered in the bottom of the first inning with a two-out solo home run by Alacia Starfford. Rhianna Green singled home Nakendra Jones in the third inning to cut the deficit to 3-2 for Florida A&M.

The Dolphins bats awoke again in fourth inning by scoring three runs to take a 6-2 lead.

Jensen and Amber Moseley each drew one-out back-to-back walks to open the inning, while Valerie Alter followed with a walk to load the bases. In the next at-bat, Melo singled down the left field line to score Jensen and Moseley for the 5-2 advantage. Alter scored in the next at-bat to wrap up the scoring.

In the bottom of the inning, Melissa Oliphant led off with a solo home run to make it 6-3 for the Rattlers, but the Dolphins scored on a double steal in the fifth inning to extend their lead.

JU put the game out of reach in the sixth inning with the help of a two-RBI single by Novak and a two-RBI triple by Renee LaCroix to secure the win. LaCroix finished with three hits to lead JU.

Jensen pitched out of a jam in the fifth inning and added a scoreless sixth inning to pick her first career save for the Dolphins.

Rattler starter Ashley Jones (5-12) was tagged with the loss after allowing seven runs (five earned) on seven hits in five innings.

In game two, JU scored seven runs in the first four innings en route to the 7-1 victory.

The Dolphins broke a scoreless tie in the second inning by plating two runs off two Rattler errors to take the early lead.

Novak reached on a dropped fly ball by the second baseman to start the inning. She moved to third on the next at-bat when Gordon made it to first after her sacrifice bunt was thrown into right field. LaCroix followed with a sacrifice fly to score Novak and move Gordon to third. Two batter's later, Valerie Alter plated Gordon on a fielder's choice to finish the JU scoring.

Gordon gave JU a 3-0 advantage in the third inning with a double down the left line to score Mirante.

In the fourth inning, Novak tallied a two-run single to cap off a four-run rally to help round out JU's offensive onslaught.

The Rattlers scored a run off a Dolphin error in the seventh inning, but Buell quashed the late rally to end the game.

Buell would pitch four no-hit innings after scattering two hits in the first two frames to help ensure the JU victory.

Destiny Gordon (1-9) took the loss for the Rattlers by giving up three runs (one earned) in three innings. Ashley Johns allowed four runs on four hits in 0.2 innings of relief.

The Dolphins host Atlantic Sun Conference rival North Florida for a doubleheader on Friday at the JU Softball Complex beginning at 6 p.m. The match up is another installment of the year-long SunTrust River City Rumble between the schools.