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Women’s College World Series Preview

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Gators Softball begins the most important stretch of games in program history today at when the No. 1 Gators (67-3) face Louisiana-Lafayette. The Cajuns (51-13), other than having an awesome nickname, are upset minded, ousting hosts Houston in the Super Regionals and LSU in the regionals.

 

The Gators have gotten this far on the arm of Stacey Nelson (45-3, 0.73 ERA). Having a shut down starter is invaluable, but the regionals loss to UCF proved the Gators can’t just wait around and hope to get offense going. Francesca Enea (15 HR, 60 RBI), Ali Gardiner (.625 SLG, 56 RBI) and Megan Bush (13 HR, 41 RBI) are three of the players UF will lean on because they have power. In a tournament, one big hit can mean the difference between a winner and loser because when fatigue sets in, the power hitters should still have something left in the tank. Speaking of power, UF will have to deal with the Cajuns’ Holly Tankersley and her 21 homers and 72 RBI. Only one other player for Lafayette has double digit homers.

 

The two other teams in Florida’s bracket, Texas A&M (54-7) and Virginia Tech (49-17), are very similar to UF. Va Tech has All-American Angela Tincher (38-8, 0.62 ERA) who only loses when the Hokies can’t hit. Their .244 team batting average looks terrible compared to the .300+ of everyone else, but when you hold opponents to .155, Tech wins some games they shouldn’t win. A&M has a balanced offensive attack, but lack the power numbers UF or Lafayette can claim.