BLACKSBURG (hokiesports.com) - The 23rd-ranked Florida State softball team took a 4-3 decision Sunday at Tech Softball Park to complete the three-game sweep of Virginia Tech. FSU swept Saturday’s doubleheader in front of a record crowd at the facility.
Florida State got a run in the first inning, but the Hokies battled back for two runs in the third inning to take the lead. Pinch runner Nina Compton scored on Lauren Gaskill’s double and then Gaskill later scored on a throwing error.
Like Saturday’s first game, Tech led 2-1 late and again FSU scored three runs late to take control. With runners on first and second base with one out in the fifth inning, Maddie O’Brien grounded to Tech pitcher Kelly Heinz. Heinz’s underhanded toss to first sailed high, allowing two runs to score. The Seminoles tacked on another big run in the inning on a sacrifice fly, which would prove to be big.
In the seventh inning, Courtney Liddle’s two-out single plated Gaskill to make it 4-3, but Tech couldn’t get any more across as the Seminoles held on for the victory.
Tech’s pitching staff held FSU to just two hits in the game, but walked eight - two of which scored. Heinz (L, 13-5) went 4.2 innings, allowing four runs (one earned) on two hits with six walks and no strikeouts. She also committed the big error that allowed FSU to take the lead for good. Maggie Tyler pitched the final 2.1 innings, giving up two walks.
With the win, FSU improved to 37-15, 16-2 in the ACC while the Hokies fell to 27-15, 6-8 in the conference. With just a series at Georgia Tech remaining next weekend, the Noles have clinched the ACC’s regular season title. Tech, despite a strong NCAA RPI, now sits in sixth place with a series at seventh-place Virginia next weekend, followed by a home series against third-place Maryland to wrap up the regular season to try and get enough wins to secure a spot in the NCAA field.
The loss is Tech’s fifth straight overall and the sixth straight at home.
Tech will be back in action twice during the work week, taking on Radford twice. On Tuesday, the Hokies will play the Highlanders at Dedmon Center Field in Radford in a single game starting at 7 p.m. The two will then meet at Tech Softball Park in Blacksburg on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
For updates on Virginia Tech softball, follow the Hokies on Twitter (@VT_Softball).