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FSU softball: No. 4 Noles win series at North Carolina

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Three Seminoles hit homeruns as FSU took the series from the Tar Heels

The Florida State offense struck early against UNC’s Hannah George. After the first out, Sydney Sherrill walked. With one on and one out, Mack Leonard stepped into the box. On the 2-1 count, Leonard took George deep over centerfield, giving her team a 2-0 lead.

Kathryn Sandercock sat the Tar Heels down in order in the bottom of the frame. After nothing more from either side in the 2nd, the ‘Noles headed to the 3rd inning.

Brooke Blankenship led off with a single through the third baseman and shortstop, turning the lineup over. George recorded the first out on the grounder, which moved over Blankenship. With a runner in scoring position, Sherrill doubled to push another run across, making it 3-0.

After the run scored, UNC went to Lilli Backes to face Leonard. Leonard welcomed her with a double into right field, beating the outfield shift. After a caught stealing and strikeout, Sandercock went back into the circle.

The Heels were set down in order in the 3rd, with Sandercock picking up two more strikes out.

In the bottom of the 4th, the Heels got their first hits off of Sandercock. Sara Jubas and Skylar Brooks both reached safely, the Seminole defense recorded the next two outs. With runners on second and third, Kianna Jones singled down the left field line to score the pair, making it 4-2. A pop out to Blankenship at short ended the inning.

The ‘Noles and the Heels both left runners on in the 5th inning, but were not able to score. In the 6th, after a foul ball ripped down left field line, Kalei Harding hit a solo shot over centerfield. Backes recorded a strikeout and brought Jahni Kerr to the plate. Kerr joined the homerun party with her own solo shot off of Backes. The Carolina defense got the next two outs to end the threat.

In the 7th, Mudge led off with a single into the gap. Sherrill recorded her second walk of the game, putting two on for the rest of the lineup. A pop out and fly out put runners on the corners for Harding. On the 1-2 count, Harding hit her second home run of the game, putting the score to 9-2 heading into the last half inning.

Mack Leonard came on for Sandercock in the bottom of the 7th. She allowed a walk with one out to a pinch hitter, but she was retired on the fielder’s choice. Leonard got Jubas to ground out to clinch the win for her team.

Box Score

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FSU will head home to take on Stetson in the midweek. The game will be on Tuesday at 5 p.m. on the ACCNX