Behind an impressive hitting and pitching performance from freshman Cassidy Davis, No. 3 Florida State (6-0) earned a 5-0 win over Florida A&M (0-6) on Wednesday night at JoAnne Graf Field.
Davis (1-0) earned the first start of her career in the circle for the Noles and tossed 6.0 shutout innings, facing just one over the minimum after giving up two hits and one walk with six strikeouts. At the plate, the Valrico, Fla., native was a perfect 2-for-2, including a walk and an RBI double.
The six-game winning streak to open a season is tied for the eighth-longest in Florida State history, and the longest since the 2012 team opened the year with a 16-0 record.
“This time of the year is about getting in game situations and seeing how everyone can work in different positions so we can know what kind of team we have as we move through the season,” said FSU head coach Lonni Alameda. “I thought Cassidy was great for us today, both in the circle and at the plate. She’s such a smart kid, both academically and athletically, and she’s been stretched by not only having to learn to pitch at a high level, but also to hit, and she’s doing a great job.”
The Noles opened the scoring the second inning with a sacrifice fly from freshman Dani Morgan for her fifth RBI of the season. Ellie Cooper scored on the play after drawing a walk and moving to third after a single by Cali Harrod and a walk by Davis.
FSU scored two unearned runs in the third inning after Jessica Warren led off with a walk. The junior third baseman stole second and moved to third on a one-out groundout by Sydney Broderick. Carsyn Gordon reached on a FAMU throwing error, extending the inning and allowing Warren to make it 2-0 FSU.
After Gordon stole second base and moved to third on the second FAMU throwing error of the inning, she came into score on an RBI single by Cooper to give the Noles a 3-0 lead.
FSU added runs in the fifth and sixth behind an RBI single by Broderick and an RBI double by Davis, respectively.
Despite allowing three batters to reach base, Davis was helped out by fellow freshman Anna Shelnutt, as the FSU catcher retired a pair of FAMU runners attempting to steal second, once in the second inning and again in the sixth.
When FAMU’s Taylor Rosier hit a single through the right side in the top of the fourth, it snapped a streak of 11.2 hitless innings for the Rattlers against Florida State, dating back to May 5, 2016. FSU’s Abby Evans retired the final three batters of that regular season game and Jessica Burroughs tossed a no-hitter in the NCAA Regional game on May 20, before Davis’ excellent start on Wednesday night.
Burroughs pitched the top of the seventh in relief of Davis, giving up one hit and recording a strikeout to end the game.
The Noles welcome Northwestern, Nebraska and Pitt to Tallahassee this weekend for the second annual ACC/Big Ten Softball Challenge on February 17-19. Both ACC teams will play each other Big Ten team twice over the course of the three days, as three other locations (Atlanta, Chapel Hill and Raleigh, N.C.) will each host a four-team tournament as well. The Big Ten won the inaugural Challenge in 2016, 20-12.
FSU’s first game of the weekend will come against Northwestern on Friday, February 17 at 6:30 p.m.
Admission is free for all home games during the 2017 regular season and fans can listen online to our FSU Softball Radio (@FSUsbRadio) broadcasts free of charge on Seminoles.com, along with links for live stats for each game of the season.