A solo shot from Dezarae Maldonado was the lone Bulls run on the afternoon
CLEARWATER, Fla., Feb. 14, 2020 – The University of South Florida softball team dropped a 9-1 run-rule decision against No. 9 Alabama on the second day of the St. Pete/Clearwater Invitational.
The Bulls (0-6) came inches from scoring in the top of the first. With runners on first and third, Bethaney Keen (Bradenton, Fla.) hit a fly ball deep to center field that would have cleared the wall, but Jenna Johnson was there to make a catch that caused her to tumble over the fence to end the inning.
Alabama (4-3) ultimately got on the board first, singling home a run to take the lead in its half of the first.
Dezarae Maldonado (Winter Haven, Fla.) hit her first career home run to issue USF’s response in the second inning. The solo shot to left evened the score at 1-1 heading into the third.
Pitchers prevailed until the fourth, when Alabama retook the lead with a three-run home run off the bat of Kaylee Tow. The Crimson Tide added two more runs later in the inning to extend their lead to 6-1.
Alabama’s bats stayed hot in the fifth inning. The Crimson Tide brought three runs across the plate to walk off with the 9-1 victory.
Coach Tommy Santiago on the offensive effort…“I don’t think it’s really a struggle right now, it’s more of a mindset. We’re setting the table and we’re getting pieces on. We just need to cash in. With runners in scoring position, I think we might be trying to do a little too much. We just have to keep it simple. Our one and two have been great in (AnaMarie) Bruni and (Brooke) Leistl, and even (Meghan) Sheehan in the nine, everything is being set. We just have to find a way to cash it in a little better.”
- Maldonado’s home run was the first of her career but her second in a USF uniform. She also hit a home run last season against Team Japan in an exhibition game.
The Bulls will face-off against No. 17/19 Texas Tech on Saturday in a 5:30 p.m. game at the Eddie C. Moore Complex’s field one. The game will be streamed on ESPN3.
About USF Softball
Be sure to follow USF softball on social media (Twitter / Facebook / Instagram) and visit GoUSFBulls.com for the most up-to-date information. The USF softball program has been one of the most successful on campus, making 15 NCAA tournament appearances, including a trip to the Women’s College World Series in 2012.
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