Chapel Hill, NC - Head coach Lonni Alameda won the 400th and 401st games of her coaching career as No. 9/11 Florida State (33-4, 11-2 ACC) took both games of Sunday’s doubleheader over North Carolina (18-14, 9-4) on March 30. The Seminoles cruised to a 6-0 win in game one, while they outlasted the Tar Heels in game two to grab a 5-3 victory.
“Extremely excited about the way the team came together today,” said Alameda. “UNC is a quality program and being on the road and getting two wins is huge for where we are at right now. We look forward to coming out tomorrow to finish out the series. I am pleased with how the bottom of the lineup came through for us today and Courtney was excellent for us both with her bat and her glove.”
Florida State used the long ball to take care of North Carolina in game one. Tiffani Brown hit an infield single with two outs in the third and Courtney Senas came to the plate a batter later and crushed a home run to center to make it 2-0 FSU after three innings.
Victoria East led off the fourth inning and deposited the first pitch she saw into the trees out beyond the left field wall to extend Florida State’s lead to 3-0.
The Seminoles made it 5-0 in the fifth as Senas nearly added another home run as her hit went off the top of the wall in left center. Bailey Schinella followed later in the inning and the junior ripped a two-run home run to left center for her third home run of the season. Senas ended game one batting 3-for-4 with two RBI and three runs scored.
Florida State plated its final run of game one in the sixth inning as the bases were loaded via infield singles by Senas and Schinella and a walk by Maddie O’Brien. Stephanie Hartness walked to drive in the sixth run of the game and give her 16 RBIs for the season.
Lacey Waldrop pitched beautifully for the Seminoles as she improved to 20-2 on the season. She threw 7.0 innings allowing only three hits and two walks to go along with four strikeouts in her complete game victory.
Waldrop allowed two walks in the top of the first and a great defensive catch by Senas saved a run and only allowed the runner to reach third after tagging up. The pitcher from Chester, Va., settled in and retired 17 of the next 19 batters of the game.
Florida State continued to show the power early in game two as Briana Hamilton hammered a second inning pitch for a home run off the top of the trees in dead center, scoring Ellie Cooper and Celeste Gomez who reach on a single and a walk, respectively. Florida State would lead 3-0 after two full frames.
Hartness extended the Florida State lead in the fourth inning with a solo home run to center. It was the first home run of the redshirt freshman’s career.
Jessica Burroughs continued what Waldrop began in game one and held UNC off the board until the bottom of the fourth as the Tar Heels scored two runs after loading the bases with just one out. It ended a streak of 27.0 consecutive scoreless innings over the last five games for the FSU pitching staff.
Burroughs was relieved by Waldrop with two outs in the UNC fourth after allowing two runs. The redshirt freshman finished with 3.2 innings, allowing four hits, three walks and recording three strikeouts.
The Seminoles quickly added to their lead in the fifth by bringing home another run after Senas and O’Brien singled and were moved over by a Schinella ground out to second. East recorded her second RBI of the doubleheader with a ground out to third.
Waldrop was solid in her first relief appearance of 2014. She stymied the Carolina hitters better than she did in her game one shutout as she recorded five strikeouts in her first 2.1 innings against the Tar Heels.
The Tar Heels threatened in the seventh as Aquilla Mateen and Amy Nece led off the inning with singles and were moved up a base due to a passed ball. A strikeout and a walk loaded the bases with one out but Waldrop would record her seventh strikeout of the game to give UNC one last chance.
A walk to Amber Parrish would plate a run for UNC, but that’s all the Tar Heels would get as the next batter grounded into a fielder’s choice that O’Brien scooped and stepped on second to end the threat and the game.
Waldrop allowed only one run on two hits and two walks while recording seven strikeouts in 3.1 innings of relief to get the win and improve to 21-2 on the season.
Alameda is in her 11th year of coaching and has brought Florida State back into national prominence. She spent five years at the helm of UNLV and led the Rebels to the NCAA Tournament in 2005 as she went on to win Mountain West Conference and NFCA West Region Coach of the Year honors.
While at Florida State, she has guided FSU to a 242-101 record and an 83-33 mark against ACC opponents. The Seminoles have finished no lower than third in the conference during her time at FSU, including winning the 2011 ACC Tournament Championship and 2013 ACC Regular Season Championship. Florida State has gone to the NCAA tournament each season, including reaching the NCAA Super Regionals in 2013.
The Seminoles will wrap up the series with the Tar Heels on Mon., March 31 with a nationally televised game to air on ESPNU with first pitch scheduled for 6:00 p.m. Adam Amin and Amanda Scarborough will be on the call.
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