TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The No. 3 seeded Florida State Softball Team (55-9) punched their ticket to the Women’s College World Series with a 4-2 win over No. 14 seeded Georgia (42-15) at the Seminole Softball Complex. This is the Seminoles first super regional series win at home since the 2018 Women’s College World Series Championship side.
FSU began their work in the third with two straight hit by pitches to begin the inning before a grounder moved Autumn Belviy and Josie Muffley into scoring position. Jahni Kerr stepped up with the chance to bring in the first runs of the game and did so with a shot to the Georgia shortstop who elected to throw home, but Belviy just beat out the tag by the slimmest of margins and the Noles were in business.
Kalei Harding was next up to bat and continued her strong postseason performance with a beautifully knocked two-run RBI double into left to score Muffley and Kerr for a 3-0 advantage after three. She finished the night with two hits and currently leads the team in the postseason with 12 hits.
Georgia was able to respond in the bottom of the third with a groundout to first to allow the runner at third to score their first run. The Noles next run came in the sixth when Hallie Wacaser crushed a liner into right for an RBI single to send Amaya Ross to home plate and restore the three run lead.
The Bulldogs cranked the pressure up in the sixth with an RBI single to cut the lead to two before Kathryn Sandercock came in relief. She shut down the inning with a walk, pop-up, and two swinging strikeouts to bring the crowd into full roar.
In the bottom of the seventh with the winning run for Georgia at the plate, Sandercock forced a fly out to Kaley Mudge to clinch the win and place in the 2023 Women’s College World Series.
In their final appearances in Tallahassee, Mack Leonard and Kathryn Sandercock bowed out with mighty performances in the circle.
Leonard had one of her most dominant performances in the circle with her FSU best 4.1 innings, retired the first six batters to start the game, allowed just one extra base hit throughout her 50 pitches, and took her fifth career win as a Seminole.
Sandercock came in relief for the 180th appearance for Florida State, now the all-time leader in pitching appearances in program history, and provided clutch pitches in tight situations and took her ninth save of the season.
The Seminoles will now pack their bags and head to Oklahoma City for the Women’s College World Series and will face No. 6 seeded Oklahoma State on Thursday, June 1
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