May 10, 2009
RALEIGH, N.C. Sophomore Kristen Adkins tossed a complete-game and held off a furious seventh inning rally as the No. 21/15 Georgia Tech Softball Team (43-13) defeated No. 16/22 Florida State (43-14), 3-1, in the ACC Tournament championship game Sunday afternoon at Dail Stadium.
The Yellow Jackets had a 3-0 lead heading to the seventh inning when Florida State mounted a furious come-back. The Seminoles had a run in and the bases loaded with just one out when FSU’s Kaleigh Rafter hit into the game-ending double play. Rafter hit a pop up into centerfield which was caught by senior Blair Shimandle. Shimandle loaded up and gunned Brittany Joseph down at the plate to end the game as sophomore catcher Jessica Weaver applied the tag.
Adkins earned All-Tournament MVP honors as she allowed just one run in 13 innings of work over the weekend. Joining her from Tech on the All-Tournament team were senior Whitney Haller, Shimandle, freshman Kelsi Weseman and redshirt junior Jen Yee.
The Yellow Jackets will now prepare for their eighth straight NCAA Tournament appearance. Georgia Tech will learn its seed and regional destination when the NCAA reveals the field of 64 tonight at 10 p.m. lives on ESPNU.
This is the third tournament title in school history for the Yellow Jackets as they also won in 2002 and 2005.
The Yellow Jackets scored all three of their runs in the first inning against Florida State starter Terese Gober. Yee led off with a single and was sacrificed to second base by Shimandle. After a Weseman walk and a Gober wild pitch, Tech had runners at second and third with just one out.
Haller made it a 2-0 game when she laced a two-run single up the middle and took second on the throw. Later in the inning, freshman pinch runner Shannon Bear came around to score on a RBI single off the bat of Adkins. Tech had runners at second and third with one out, but FSU relief pitcher Sarah Hamilton came in and slammed the door.
Hamilton allowed just four hits and one walk while striking out six, but that was all the offense Adkins would need. The Seminoles had at least one runner in each inning, but Adkins was able to escape jam after jam to pull out the win. She is now 23-7 on the season as she gave up the one earned run on eight hits and three walks. Adkins struck out two batters.
The biggest threats for FSU came in the final two innings. In the sixth, the Seminoles had runners at first and second with one out. After Adkins recorded the first out of the inning on a ground ball, she induced an inning-ending double play off the bat of Michelle Snyder. Snyder hit a sharp grounder down the line which senior Tiffany Johnson fielded at third base, stepped on the bag and threw to first completing Tech’s ACC-leading 21st double play of the season. Double play number 22 occurred in the seventh inning to seal the win.
Then in the seventh, FSU made a bid to tie the game, if not take the lead, but Adkins was able to get out of the jam thanks to Shimandle’s heroics.