The Daily Nole

Seminoles Lose Heartbreaker to UCLA, 7-4

Katie Baker/FSU athletics

Florida State softball dropped its first game of the Women’s College World Series to the UCLA Bruins by a 7-4 margin on Thursday night. A dominant sixth inning from UCLA proved to be the decisive frame in Oklahoma City.

Meghan King started on the mound for Florida State while Rachel Garcia got the start for the Bruins. Garcia was named the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year earlier this week.

In a game largely devoid of offense, Florida State’s fifth inning broke open the scoring. It began with an RBI single from Dani Morgan that brought in Cali Herrod for a slim 1-0 lead. Back-to-back strikeouts threatened to halt the FSU offense, but then UCLA chose to intentionally walk Jessica Warren. The next batter up was Carsyn Gordon, who was also walked, this time unintentionally.

With bases loaded and two outs, Sydney Sherrill launched a ball deep into left field. The UCLA outfielder let the ball slip past her glove and roll down the line, bringing in three FSU runs in the process. The Seminoles took a 4-0 lead going into the bottom of the inning.

UCLA mustered a response by getting two runners on base with no outs. After a fly out and an RBI, they were on the board. King struck out the next batter and then FSU elected to make a pitching change. The Seminoles brought in Kylee Hanson to finish out the inning against Garcia. She struck her out and stopped the UCLA threat from materializing.

After FSU went scoreless in the top of the sixth, the UCLA lineup was able to load the bases with one out. Hanson proceeded to give up a run on a sacrifice fly. Then, Kylee Perez launched a 3-run shot to right field to give the Bruins a 5-4 lead. After a triple brought in another run, FSU made another pitching change — this time with Cassidy Davis coming in. UCLA tacked on one more run to give them a 7-4 lead.

A stunned Florida State could not mount a comeback in the top of the seventh. A pop-up fly ended the game and UCLA walked away the victor.

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