Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Nevins, USF win in Big East softball

Sara Nevins’ father Joe had heart surgery Thursday.

Sara Nevins’ father Joe had heart surgery Thursday.

TAMPA — USF pitcher Sara Nevins didn't have a familiar face in the stands Thursday night, but she took the ball and pitched six strong innings in a 3-0 win against Providence in the Big East tournament, two nights after her father Joe had a heart attack.

"For Sara Nevins to come out on a long day like that and tell me she wanted the ball, that she was okay … she was phenomenal," coach Ken Eriksen said. "That was a lot of emotion today."

Nevins, a junior from Pinellas Park, spent time Thursday morning with her father, who had successful bypass heart surgery Thursday afternoon. Nevins is known for being emotionless during games, but Thursday was a challenge she hadn't faced before.

"I thought about him. He told me to make sure I pitched well, to do it for him," said Nevins, a left-hander who was named Big East pitcher of the year on Wednesday.

Eriksen said that Nevins' father, a regular at Bulls games, had asked his doctors to move a 1:15 surgery to 7:30 a.m. on the chance he might be able to attend Thursday's game. Eriksen wouldn't be surprised if Nevins is there tonight to watch his daughter pitch against No. 9 Louisville.

The Bulls (41-14), held to one hit in five scoreless innings, broke through for three runs in the sixth, sparked by outfielder D'Anna Devine's double down the leftfield line. With the bases loaded, freshman catcher Lee Ann Spivey hit a high line drive off the first baseman's glove to bring in two runs. Lindsey Richardson pitched a 1-2-3 seventh for her sixth save.

"(Spivey)'s hitting fifth. That's an RBI spot, and she's done it all year for us," Eriksen said. "She's like Nevins. You take a look at her: no emotion, just give me the bat and ready to play ball. Those are the type of kids you want."

Spivey said she tried to be a calming influence on Nevins (23-7), who helped the Bulls shut out Providence for the fourth time this season; they have three shutouts in their other 50 games.

"Before the game I told her whatever she was pitching at me, I was going to stop it. I know what she's been going through," Spivey said. "We just all have her back no matter what. She pitched her heart out, and I'm really proud of her."

The Bulls, ranked No. 24 in the coaches poll, advanced to today's semifinals, where they'll face third-seeded Louisville, the Big East's highest-ranked team at No. 11, in the second game at 6:30. The teams didn't meet in the regular season; both finished within a game of the Big East regular-season title.

Top-seeded Notre Dame and fourth-seeded DePaul advanced to the 4 p.m. semifinal with shutout victories Thursday. Notre Dame's Laura Winter, the Big East player of the year, threw a three-hitter, striking out eight in a 6-0 win; Chloe Saganowich had three of the Fighting Irish's five hits and two RBIs. DePaul got a 1-0 win behind Kirsten Verdun's two-hitter, facing one more than the minimum, and centerfielder Samantha Dodd had three hits and drove in the game's only run.

Louisville advanced with a 12-3 mercy-rule win against Syracuse in five innings, getting four RBIs from Jordan Trimble.

more softball: Kirsti Merritt went 3-for-4 with five RBIs as No. 2-ranked Florida beat No. 9 Alabama 8-4 in the SEC tournament in Lexington, Ky. The Gators (50-7) face Georgia in a semifinal at 1 today (ESPNU). … Host FSU beat Boston College 6-0 in the ACC tournament. The Seminoles (40-15) face North Carolina in a semi­final at 3:30 today (Fox Sports Florida).

Information from Times wires was used in this report.

. fast facts

Big East softball tournament

When/where: Today-Saturday; USF Softball Stadium

Format: Single elimination

Schedule: Semifinals today — Notre Dame vs. DePaul, 4; USF vs. Louisville, 6:30. Championship — 4 Saturday, ESPN2

Admission: First 500 children get in free; single-session pass $7 adults, $5 kids; all-session pass $21 adults, $15 kids

Nevins, USF win in Big East softball 05/09/13 [Last modified: Friday, May 10, 2013 12:50am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. College World Series: Gators, LSU face off in all-SEC finals

    College

    OMAHA, Neb. — The matchup for the College World Series finals bolsters the case for those who say the best baseball in the land is played in the SEC.

    Florida’s Brady Singer, delivering during a CWS win over Louisville last week, is scheduled to start tonight against LSU.
  2. Jones: Fox Sports Sun shows depth in Rays coverage

    TV and Radio

    tom jones' two cents

    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst from a weekend of televised sports.

    Best coverage

    Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Evan Longoria (3) makes a run home for a score in the in the final game of a three-game series between the Tampa Bay Rays and AL East rival the Baltimore Orioles at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, June 25, 2017.
  3. Brian Boyle says returning to Lightning a 'huge option'

    Blogs

    As former Lightning forward Brian Boyle approaches free agency this week, he said he's trying to stay busy.

  4. Rays journal: Blake Snell to rejoin rotation, Erasmo Ramirez heads to bullpen

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — LHP Blake Snell is rejoining the Rays' rotation, but the move has as much to do with helping the bullpen as it does with Snell's improvement during his time at Triple-A Durham.

    Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Erasmo Ramirez (30) delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Cincinnati Reds Wednesday, June 21, 2017 in St. Petersburg.
  5. Rays' bullpen stars lit up in loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Saturday it was the soft underbelly of the bullpen that let one get away from the Rays, incurring the wrath of the team's faithful followers, who wondered why the high-leverage guys weren't pitching.

    Rays closer Alex Colome, coming in with the score tied in the ninth, allows three runs in his second straight poor outing.