GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Freshman Amanda Lorenz hit a walk-off two-run home run in the bottom of the 10th inning to help No. 1 Florida defeat Mississippi State, 3-1 (10 innings), on Sunday to sweep its fourth SEC series of the season. Florida is now 2-0 in extra-inning games this season and Sunday's 10-inning affair marked UF's longest game since the Gators played a 15-inning marathon with Nebraska on June 1, 2013 at the Women's College World Series.
Florida (45-3/15-3 SEC) swept a three-game series against the Bulldogs (24-23/3-15 SEC) for the first time since April 4-5, 2009. In addition, this was fourth time in school history that Florida completed a three-game sweep of Mississippi State. Florida, who's currently in first place in the SEC standings, holds a 15-3 mark in conference play for the first time since 2012 when the Gators were 16-2 through 18 league games.
The Gators are now 3-0 in extra-inning games against the Bulldogs, as they last played an extra inning game on April 28, 2007 in Gainesville.
Pitching and defense reigned supreme early, as both squads were hitless through three innings.
Florida recorded the game's first hit in the fourth, but Mississippi State scored the game's first run in the fifth. MSU's Sarai Nui began the fifth with a solo home run to center to break the scoreless tie.
Undaunted, Florida answered in the sixth.
Senior Kirsti Merritt tied the game up at one run apiece with a sacrifice fly. Senior Kelsey Stewart led off the inning with a single up the middle and scored on Merritt's fly out to right.
The game was knotted at one run apiece until Lorenz recorded her second home run of the week and her sixth of the season to left-center field in the 10th inning.
After allowing just the one run and one hit through five innings, freshman Kelly Barnhill was relieved by junior Delanie Gourley (15-2) in the sixth. Florida's left-hander tossed five of scoreless innings and allowed just two hits, while recording seven strikeouts.
Against Mississippi State this weekend, Gourley tossed 12 scoreless innings and allowed just two hits, while registering 12 strikeouts, two wins and one save.