TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) – The 22nd-ranked Florida State University softball team used seven runs with two outs in the fifth inning to earn a 12-4 mercy-rule win over Boston College on Saturday afternoon at JoAnne Graf Field. Game two has been suspended through four innings and will resume on Sunday morning at 10 a.m. with one out and no runners on in the top of the fifth of a scoreless game.
The Seminoles (40-11, 13-3) used 10 base-hits in 24 at-bats to power their way past the Eagles (20-20, 2-11) in game one. Redshirt freshman shortstop Maddie O’Brien finished 2-for-3 with four RBIs and two runs scored to lead an offensive group that produced 11 RBIs and drew seven walks in the contest.
FSU’s 11 RBIs as a team tie its season high recorded against UC Santa Barbara on March 4. O’Brien’s four runs driven in marked the third time this season she has recorded four or more RBIs in a game.
“It was great to have Maddie back for a game after missing some time with her injury,” head coach Lonni Alameda said. “She really looked comfortable out there with her swing and gave us a big boost in the No. 3 spot. Our hitters did a great job backing our pitching and hopefully we can finish up strong on Sunday in games two and three.”
Briana Hamilton finished 2-for-3 with three RBIs and two runs, which included a walk-off two-run home run. Junior Tiffani Brown stretched her hitting streak in conference games to 14 with a 2-for-4 effort, and Kelly Hensley also finished with two hits while adding an RBI. Courtney Senas recorded her fifth multiple-RBI game of the season, driving in two runs.
FSU’s 12 runs scored are its second-most this season. The Seminoles now own 40 victories this season to reach the plateau for the 29th time in program history dating back to 1978.
Redshirt junior Monica Perry (19-5) earned the win after allowing three earned runs on five hits in a complete-game five-inning contest. The complete game is Perry’s 11th of the season. Boston College’s Nicole D’Argento (9-11) took the loss after allowing 12 runs on 10 hits in 4.2 innings.
Boston College got off to a good start in the first inning when they crossed the plate twice to take an early lead. With two outs and runners on second and third base, Ali Lynette-Krech took a 1-2 pitch the opposite way to right field for a two-RBI single to put B.C. on the scoreboard right away.
FSU put up three runs in the bottom of the first inning. O’Brien made her first appearance back in the lineup after missing the previous seven games with concussion-like symptoms, and wasted no time getting back in the swing of things with an RBI double to centerfield. Following a Hamilton walk, Hamilton induced a rundown between first and second base and a fielding error allowed O’Brien to cross home to tie the game. Senas then drove home Hamilton on an RBI single.
Hamilton’s bases-loaded single in the second inning extended FSU’s lead to 4-2, and Senas added a walk to bring in Shayla Jackson and give FSU a 5-2 advantage.
The Eagles hung around with two runs in the top of the fourth inning. With one out and runners on second and third base, CJ Chirichigno’s sacrifice bunt scored Alana DiMaso. D’Argento then recorded a big RBI single through the left side with two strikes to make it 5-4.
A seven-run flurry in the bottom of the fifth ended game one in mercy-rule fashion. FSU scored all seven runs with two outs, with Celeste Gomez starting the onslaught with a double to centerfield. After Erika Leonard walked, Hensley recorded an RBI single through the right side. Two batters later, Jackson drew a bases-loaded walk to give FSU a 7-4 lead.
From there, two extra base hits ended the contest. O’Brien drove a first-pitch offering to right center for a three-run double. Hamilton then ended the game on a two-run home run to left field, her 10th of the season to tie for fifth place on the FSU single-season list with former players Brandi Stuart (2002), Tiffany Daniel (1987) and Ashley Stager (2011).
Game three of the series, which will be the second game played on Sunday, will begin 30 minutes following the conclusion of game two. Following the final game, seniors Shayla Jackson and Mallory Borden will be honored, and the Seminoles will then receive their 2011 ACC Championship rings on the top floor of the indoor batting facility.