VALDOSTA, Ga. – The Valdosta State Blazers are headed to the NCAA Division II National Championship Tournament for the second time in three seasons after a 2-0 victory over Florida Southern in the NCAA South Super Regional Saturday afternoon in front of 713 fans.
Natalia Morozova was VSU’s hero for the second consecutive game with a two-run homer in the fourth inning for the only runs of the game. After pitching 16 innings Friday, Alanna Hadley put together seven more innings for her 12th shutout of the season. She gave up six hits, walked one and struck out two while forcing Florida Southern to hit into grounders and pop ups for most of the day.
The Moccasins outhit Valdosta State, 6-5, but two of those FSC hits came in the bottom of the seventh inning in a comeback bid.
Valdosta State’s defense was able to strand six Florida Southern runners in the game.
For VSU, Courtney Albritton, Samantha Posey, April Hutchens and Morozova all registered hits in the game with Posey being the only Blazer to notch more than one hit. Morozova, however, was the only player on the field with any RBI as she proved to be FSC pitcher Christine Clark’s nemesis on the weekend.
After hitting in the winning RBI in the 16th inning Friday night, Morozova lined up a home run over the centerfield fence after Posey had singled. With Fran Johnson pinch running for Posey, Morozova took off on a sprint around the bases, showing plenty of excitement after the biggest hit of the season.
Valdosta State will leave for Louisville, Ky., Monday morning to compete in the National Tournament at the NCAA DII National Championship Festival to be held May 15-19. The Blazers will play their first game of the tournament at 12:30 p.m.