Jackson gives USF softball 2nd straight walkoff win
USF softball continues to close in on the best start in the program's history, and on Sunday, the Bulls rallied and won in their final at-bat for the second game in a row, getting a home run from Kenshyra Jackson for an eight-inning win against Massachusetts.
The Bulls (25-5) trailed 1-0 with two outs in the seventh, but rallied as freshman D'Anna Devine walked, advanced on a Gina Kafalas single, went to third on another walk and then scored on a bases-loaded wild pitch. That set up the eighth, when Jackson hit her third home run of the season to give the Bulls a dramatic come-from-behind victory.
Jackson's home run came off UMass ace Sara Plourde, last year's Atlantic 10 Pitcher of the Year and a second-team All-America last season. USF freshman Sam Greiner pitched three scoreless innings of two-hit ball for the victory. One more win and USF matches its best record ever after 31 games, with Big East play starting next week.
The Bulls are ranked in both major national polls -- No. 24 in the NFCA coaches poll and No. 23 in the ESPN.com rankings.
One lingering problem for USF is its infield defense -- the Bulls had been using senior Alexis Nowell at second, but she had eight errors in the first 19 games. Devine, playing second, added three more errors in Monday's win, giving her eight on the season in just 16 games. As a team, the Bulls have 32 errors in 30 games, but that's down from last season, when they finished with 74 errors in 53 games.