Florida Softball starts slow, runs away late for run rule win over Jacksonville

Florida Gators starting pitcher/relief pitcher Elizabeth Hightower (22) pitches in the 6th inning.
Florida Gators starting pitcher/relief pitcher Elizabeth Hightower (22) pitches in the 6th inning. / Doug Engle / USA TODAY NETWORK

On Tuesday night, Florida softball exploded early and cut off any hope Jacksonville had to pull off the upset. On Wednesday night in Gainesville, it took a bit longer for the bats to get going, and Jacksonville was able to hang around.

The end result however was the same and the Gators knocked off Jacksonville 9-1 for their fourth run rule win out of their last five victories to open the season.

Florida Softball: That Looked Familiar

Three batters in, it looked like the Gators were going to cruise once again over Jacksonville. Kendra Falby singled, Otis Korbe walked, and Skylar Wallace hit a double to make it 1-0. Keeping the momentum going was a bit more difficult compared to Tuesday night.

The Gators went down 1-2-3 in both the second and fourth inning. They were able to scratch across another run in the third inning after Wallace tripled and Jocelyn Erickson brought her home, but Jacksonville was able to make things interesting in the fifth inning.

Keagan Rothrock had no trouble getting through the first four innings unscathed, but Jacksonville was able to bring a run home and had the tying run on third with no outs in the fifth. A pop out and strikeout helped get Florida out of the inning still ahead.

Perhaps the close call woke Florida up because they exploded for six runs in the fifth inning, started off by a Otis homerun and then a conga line of Gators all reaching base, capped off by a Katie Kistler triple.

When Erickson doubled in the sixth to bring home Otis, it ended the game at 9-1 and moved Florida to 6-1 on the season. Rothrock went all six innings for the shutout.

The Gators will next take the field this weekend at home as part of the Bubly Invitational.