April 13, 2008
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Senior Whitney Humphreys pitched a complete-game five-hitter as the Georgia Tech Softball Team (21-27, 4-10 ACC) downed Florida State (32-19, 8-7) 6-2 Sunday afternoon to win its first ACC series of the season. Senior Brittany Barnes hit her team-high ninth home run of the season as she went 2-for-3 with two runs scored and three RBI.
“I am very pleased with how we played this weekend,” head coach Sharon Perkins said. “It was especially pleasing to see them not have an emotional let-down after the Georgia games and carry the momentum into the weekend. Now, we can look forward to some home games the rest of the regular season and continuing to build on this.”
The Yellow Jackets had a chance to score in the first inning against FSU pitcher Terese Gober. Senior Aileen Morales hit the first pitch of the game up the middle for a single and then stole second base. After Gober struck out both freshman Christy Jones and senior Savannah Brown, junior Blair Shimandle reached on an infield single putting two on with two outs. Shimandle stole second base as well, but junior Whitney Haller grounded out with two runners in scoring position ending the threat.
In the bottom of the first inning, the first two Seminoles reached base on singles, but senior Whitney Humphreys was also able to get out of the jam.
The Yellow Jackets came back to score three runs in the top of the second inning with a lot of help from the Florida State defense. Three straight singles to begin the inning by senior Brittany Barnes, freshman Amanda Crow and freshman Jessica Weaver made it 1-0 Tech. With runners still on first and second with nobody out, Gober struck out senior Stephanie Butler and then got Morales to ground back to her. Gober tried to get the lead runner at third base but threw wildly allowing everybody to be safe. The throw managed to get by FSU third baseman Camille Garcia, bounce off the fence in front of the dugout and rolled all the way into left field. Both runners scored and when the throw home by left fielder Whitney Buckmon sailed to the back stop, Morales was able to take third base.
That two error play turned out to be the end of the day for Gober. Sarah Hamilton came in and got out of the jam on one pitch. Jones lined her bunt to the left side where Garcia made a diving catch in foul territory and was able to tag Morales out about halfway down the base line to complete the twin killing.
In the third, the Jackets were patient with Hamilton and after two walks and an unsuccessful fielder’s choice for the Seminoles. Tech had the bases loaded and nobody out. Game one starter Tiffany McDonald came in to face Barnes who had homered yesterday. Barnes worked a full count before hitting a sac fly to left field making the score 4-0. Crow stepped up next and battled through a nine-pitch at bat, but eventually struck out swinging. With the runners moving, Shimandle was thrown out trying to steal third base. She would have been safe, but over slid the bag and Garcia applied the tag to end the inning.
For the third straight inning, the Seminoles put runners on but Humphreys was able to get out of the jam again. The inning featured another great catch by senior Stephanie Butler in centerfield as she tracked down a line drive off the bat of Jessica Gilmore in left-centerfield right in front of the fence.
After stranding six runners in the first three innings, Humphreys settled down and held the Seminoles in check. A two-out bloop single by Ashley Stager in the bottom of the sixth inning broke up a string of nine straight batters retired by Humphreys but Monica Montez grounded out weakly to Crow at second base sending the game onto the seventh inning and Tech still in front 4-0.
The Jackets got some insurance in the top of the seventh when Barnes hit her second home run in as many days against McDonald. She crushed a McDonald offering over the left-field fence and onto the road at least 50 feet beyond the fence with Shimandle on second base and two outs. It was her team-high ninth round-tripper of the season and gave Tech a 6-0 lead.
Carly Wynn broke up Humphreys’ bid for a shutout when she hit a two-run home run to right field in the bottom of the seventh inning, but that would be as close as they would get. She improved to 11-13 with the win and is now 5-1 against Florida State in her career. Humphreys allowed just the two runs, one of which was unearned, on five hits and one walk. She struck out four batters.
Georgia Tech will play its final regular season road games on Wednesday with a doubleheader at Georgia Southern. First pitch of game one is set for 2:00 p.m. and live stats of both games will be available at www.ramblinwreck.com. The Yellow Jackets will then close out the regular season with an eight-game homestand over two weeks that features games against Boston College, Georgia State and Maryland.