GAINESVILLE, Fla. - Senior pitcher Delanie Gourley hurled a two-hit shutout to help propel the No. 1-ranked Florida Gators to a 3-0 victory over No. 20 Ole Miss (31-14, 6-10 SEC) at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium. The win clinched the program's 11th-straight SEC series victory.
The Gators wore accents of yellow in their uniform in support of those battling with pediatric cancer.
Gourley was strong in the circle for the duration of the contest, as she didn't allow a base runner until the third inning on a strikeout wild pitch to Kaylee Horton. The talented lefty relinquished the first hit to the Rebels in the sixth to Horton.
At the plate, Florida (43-3, 17-3 SEC) scored two runs in the second inning to jump out in front. It started when Nicole DeWitt ripped an RBI single up the middle to score freshman Jaimie Hoover. Hoover reached earlier in the inning with her fifth double of the season.
Kayli Kvistad drove in sophomore Amanda Lorenz later in the inning on an RBI single to center field. Kvistad finished the game 3-for-3 at the plate with a walk. The walk that occurred in the sixth inning happened to be her 50th of the season, which broke the Florida single-season record set by Aja Paculba in 2009 and tied by Lauren Haeger in 2015.
So far this season the Gators have outscored opponents 48-1 in the second inning alone.
Lorenz, who finished 2-for-2 with two runs scored, provided more separation in the fourth inning thanks to her eighth home run of the season.
Ole Miss had a chance to avoid the shut out in the sixth with Horton's leadoff triple. The Florida defense and Gourley buckled down to preserve the score as she struck out Kylan Becker looking on a full-count to end the inning.
The Gators return to action for the series finale at noon tomorrow. The game can be viewed live on the SEC Network.
"I thought Delanie pitched a really good game for us and our offense did a good job. We were able to hit the ball to all parts of the field but I thought we swung the bats well. Just like last night, we have to find the ability to get hits with two outs and get hits with runners in scoring position. I think if we can find any room for improvement it would be that. That's the hardest part of this game - hitting with runners in scoring position because when you do get runners in scoring position typically you get setup forces and a lot easier outs. So, there's more to it than saying 'just get a hit' but we'll keep saying it." - Tim Walton
From the Players
On the significance of the Yellow Game and why the team wears sunflowers every Saturday... "It hits us in the heart you know. So my senior class, we were the last class that got to meet Heather (Braswell). So we knew her for a little bit and she was so amazing, her family was amazing. She herself left her mark on this program. The fact that we can bring her spirit and everything to life every Saturday with the sunflower and just represent her and every other kid going through hard times. For us to be able to stand up for them, it means a lot." - Delanie Gourley