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New bats step up in USF softball sweep

9

February

TAMPA -- That the No. 10 USF softball team would throw a one-hitter and a shutout in Saturday's sweep of No. 13 Michigan and Samford isn't surprising, given the strong pitching staff returning from last year's College World Series squad.

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More impressive, were the way USF's newcomers stepped up at the plate, coming through with key hits in support of that pitching staff. Sophomore ace Sara Nevins gave up a two-run home run in the first to Michigan -- the only hit she allowed -- but USF had answered that scoring by the end of the inning.

The tying run came on a two-out single by freshman catcher Lee Ann Spivey -- the first of three hits for her in the doubleheader -- and that score would hold up until the bottom of the sixth.

Then, with two outs, senior Kenshyra Jackson toughed out a long at-bat, fouling off multiple two-strike pitches before she lined a shot to the wall in right field for a double. With Stephanie Juergens pinch-running, sophomore Nicollette Levine, making her first start as a Bull, stepped to the plate.

Levine is a Newsome graduate who transferred from Florida State -- in her entire freshman year there, she went 0-for-4. It took her two days to get her first hit at USF, again fouling off multiple pitches with two strikes before hitting a bloop single over the first baseman's head for the go-ahead run.

Freshmen again played key roles in a 3-0 win against Samford -- pitcher Erica Nunn pitched four scoreless innings for her first career win, striking out seven, and Spivey added another hit, as did freshman catcher Morgan Litchfield.

[Last modified: Saturday, February 9, 2013 10:35pm]

    

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