TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - No. 13/14 UCF (49-7) pitchers tossed six shutout innings, and three unearned runs helped the Knights claim a 4-1 victory over South Carolina in the opening game of the Tallahassee Regional at the Seminole Softball Complex at JoAnne Graf Field.
The Knights loaded the bases in the fourth on two hit-by-pitches and a walk, the last two reaching with two outs. Maddy Schroeder poked one to shortstop and beat the throw to break the scoreless tie, and a Gamecock throwing error on the next batter allowed two more to come home, giving UCF the 3-0 lead. The lead grew to 4-0 in the fifth on Jessica Ujvari's RBI single to left.
South Carolina (37-21) scored on a pair of doubles by junior Alaynie Page and sophomore Victoria Williams in the seventh, but it was too late.
Much like the February meeting, the Gamecocks had ample opportunities to score but couldn't come through. Twice, South Carolina left the bases loaded. In the second, three straight walks brought up the top of the Gamecocks' order with one down, but a grounder and a foul out ended that threat. An inning later, the bases were loaded with two outs, but UCF starter Mackenzie Audas got her third strikeout to finish the inning. South Carolina drew five walks in the first three innings against Audas but could not score.
Turnier (25-6) picked up the win in relief, tossing three shutout innings before allowing the one earned run in the seventh. Gamecock sophomore Nickie Blue (20-8) took the loss, allowing three runs, one earned, on two hits, two walks and two hit batters in four innings of work. She struck out three.
The infield single in the third broke the ice for UCF, but the error that followed provided the winning margin.
South Carolina left 10 runners on base in the setback.
• Page's double was her 12th of the year and tied her with Kim Pietro's 1999 in sixth for hits in a year with 83.
• Sophomores Kaylea Snaer and Williams went 1-for-3 with a walk, while both Taylor Williams and Krystan White were 1-for-2 with a walk.
• Snaer's walk ties her for seventh on SC's single-season charts with two others.
• The Gamecocks lost for just the second time this season when their opposition does not get an extra-base hit.
• Five different Knights collected singles, with Ujvari and Schroeder picking up the RBIs.
South Carolina takes on the loser of the Florida State-Dartmouth game at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday in the first elimination game of the day.