1993 NATIONAL CHAMPIONS
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Florida Southern and Ursuline Split Pair of 5-2 Games in Softball Team’s Season Opener

Makayla Deuberry
Makayla Deuberry

LAKELAND, FLA. – Makayla Deuberry's perfect game at the plate helped deliver Florida Southern a 5-2 win over Ursuline in game one of Monday night's doubleheader, but the Arrows used a five-run fourth to earn their own 5-2 victory in the nightcap as Florida Southern split its first two games of the 2019 season.

Deuberry had an RBI double in the second inning for the first run of the night, drew a leadoff walk and scored in the fourth, and added an RBI single in the fifth to play a role in three of the Moccasins' five runs in game one. That was enough to make a winner out of Aubrey Ehlers, who went the distance in the pitcher's circle and allowed just three hits in the 5-2 victory.

In the second game, Ursuline (1-3) broke a scoreless tie with five runs in the top of the fourth to account for all of its scoring in the game, and then held off a late Florida Southern rally that saw the Mocs get the tying run to the plate in the bottom of the seventh. The Moccasins (1-1) got RBI singles from Maddi Conner in the bottom of the fourth, and Jessica Trana in the sixth before leaving runners at second and third in the seventh.

HOW IT HAPPENED IN GAME ONE:

  • Deuberry's go-ahead double in the bottom of the second followed a one-out walk by freshman Taylor Davis, and it was the first of four consecutive innings in which the Moccasins scored. They tacked on another run in the bottom of the third to make it 2-0 on an RBI single by Lindsey Wilson.
  • In the fourth, it was Deuberry's leadoff walk that led to the Mocs taking a 3-0 lead, with the senior shortstop eventually reaching third base following a sacrifice bunt, hit-by-pitch, and walk. She scored easily on a fly ball by Zierra Flodman.
  • The Arrows got on the board in the top of the fifth when Matyson Michalski walked and scored on a one-out double by Ashley Buttolph, who then came home on a double steal with Brooklyn Miller.
  • The Moccasins quickly got their three-run lead back by scoring two runs of their own in the bottom of the fifth, which started with a walk by Conner and a bunt single by Wilson. Davis then doubled down the line in right to bring in Conner, though Wilson was thrown out on the bases, and Deuberry followed with an RBI single to make it 5-2.
  • Ehlers was in control for most of the game and did not allow a hit until Leah Leshnack singled softly into short right field in the fourth. That had followed a Florida Southern error, but Ehlers worked out of trouble with help from Flodman, who threw Miller out attempting to steal third. Ehlers finished the game by retiring the side in order in the sixth and seventh innings. She struck out two and walked two in addition to the three hits allowed.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS OF GAME ONE:

  • Jadin Dewith became the first Moccasin freshman to start opening night in centerfield since Heather Dull in 1997. She began her career by going 2-for-2 with a stolen base and a sacrifice bunt that led to a run. She also threw a runner out on the bases when Miller got caught in a run-down between second and third to end the top of the fifth inning. That proved to be the last scoring chance the Arrows had.
  • The Mocs also started a freshman in left where Davis went 1-for-2 with a walk and an RBI double. With Celia Higgins at third and Conner as the DP, it gave Florida Southern four freshman in their starting lineup in a season opener for the first time since 2008 (leftfielder Lindsey Powell, third baseman Peggy Alex, shortstop Dani Blake, and catcher Tori Mosley). They also had a fifth freshman start the second game of their 2008 season opener (catcher Heather Raulerson).
  • Ehlers beat Ursuline in relief last year by pitching the seventh inning of a 2-1 walk-off win by the Moccasins.
  • The Moccasins had 10 hits off three Ursuline pitchers (Miller, Sadie Jones, and Nicole Rawlings), with Trana, Wilson, Deuberry, and Dewith all collecting two of them. They also got a hit and a walk from Davis, and Higgins was twice hit by a pitch. Every starter reached with either a hit, walk, or HBP at least once in the game.

HOW IT HAPPENED IN GAME TWO:

  • Game two was scoreless until the Arrows scored all five of their runs in the top of the fourth. Prior to that, Kelli Gault had given up just two singles to the leadoff batters in the first and second innings, but they reached the senior for six hits in the fourth. It started with a single from Miller and a double from Leshnack, and both scored on a triple to deep center by Karlie Wilbur. Hannah Trent singled in Wilbur to make it 3-0 before the Arrows scored once on an error, and once more on a triple by Buttolph.
  • The Moccasins got one run back on an RBI single by Conner in the bottom of the inning, driving in Flodman who had reached on an error. Sadie Jones, Ursuline's starting pitcher in game two, prevented more damage in the fifth by getting Higgins to ground into an inning-ending double play, but the Mocs got to her again in the sixth. That run came after Meghan Sexton walked with one out, alertly tagged up and advanced to second on a fly ball hit by Flodman, and came home on a two-out single by Trana.
  • Down 5-2 in the bottom of the seventh, Florida Southern put two runners on against Jones when Wilson singled leading off the inning and Deuberry doubled with one out. Jones survived, however, by fielding a ground ball hit by Higgins for the second out of the inning and getting Dewith to pop up into shallow left for the final out.
  • Jones evened her record at 1-1 by pitching a complete game for Ursuline, giving up two runs (one earned) on six hits with one walk and one strikeout.
  • Gault also pitched a complete game for Florida Southern, allowing five runs (three earned) on 10 hits with one walk and three strikeouts. She allowed only three base runners over the final 3.1 innings.

INSIDE THE NUMBERS OF GAME TWO:

  • Buttolph, Leshnack, and Trent all had two hits for Ursuline.
  • Florida Southern's six hits came from six different players, and with their hits in game two, Deuberry, Wilson, Dewith, and Trana all finished the night with three in the doubleheader.
  • Sexton, who walked in both games, also made a spectacular catch from her second base position on a looping pop-up on the infield that took a possible hit away from Adrianna Nicpon in the fifth inning. Deuberry then laid out to make a diving catch at short to deny Miller a hit in the seventh. The Mocs also got a big defensive play from Davis in left, with the freshman combining with Deuberry to throw out Trent at home in the top of the fourth after Alison Hughes had doubled.
  • The Moccasins are now 3-1 all-time against Ursuline after beating the Arrows twice in 2018 before Monday night's split.

UP NEXT: Florida Southern hosts Flagler in another non-conference doubleheader on Wednesday at 5 p.m.