Seminoles Find What It Takes

Defending champion FSU opens with 4-2 win over Boston College

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BLACKSBURG, Va. (theACC.com) – Florida State received a challenge from stubborn Boston College, but Thursday’s Atlantic Coast Conference Softball Championship opener ultimately held true to seeded form.

Senior Bailey Schinella had a pair of hits and three RBIs, and sophomore Jessica Burroughs pitched three strong innings in relief as the top-seeded and defending champion Seminoles fended off the eighth-seeded Eagles for a 4-2 win before 507 at Tech Stadium.

Nationally ninth-ranked FSU (43-12) moved on to Friday’s 1 p.m. semifinal game and will face the winner of Thursday’s second quarterfinal between fourth-seeded Louisville and fifth-seeded NC State. Boston College slipped to 27-24.

The teams combined for just three hits through the first 3 ½ innings, but the Seminoles broke through with three runs in the bottom of the fourth. Florida State’s rally began when BC starter Allyson Frei hit leadoff hitter Jessica Warren with a pitch and walked Alex Powers.

Ellie Cooper followed with a sacrifice bunt, and was safe on an error by second baseman Chloe Sharabba. Warren hustled home with the game’s first run on the play, and Schinella followed with a two-run double to left center that gave the Seminoles their 3-0 lead.

Sharabba atoned for the miscue in the top of the fifth with her third home run of the season – a line-drive shot down the line in left that followed a leadoff single by Tatiana Cortez and brought the Eagles within 3-2. Jordan Chimento then doubled to left center, chasing ACC Pitcher of the Year Lacey Waldrop, who had allowed only an infield single and struck out seven through the first four innings.

Waldrop gave way to Burroughs, who issued one walk but retired three batters – two via strikeouts – to avoid further damage.

Schinella’s RBI single in the bottom of the fifth pushed the Seminoles’ lead to 4-2. FSU had a chance for more, but BC right-fielder Taylor Coroneos threw Warren out at the plate, and Freis struck out pinch-hitter Victoria Daddis with the bases loaded to end the inning.

The Eagles put two runners on with one out in the top of the seventh, but Burroughs struck out Chelsea Dimon and retired Chloe Dubocq on a fly ball to center to end the inning.

Burroughs allowed just one hit during her three-inning stint while walking two and striking out seven to record her third save of the year. Waldrop picked up the win to improve to 28-6.

Frei (19-15) took the loss for the Eagles. The freshman right-hander worked five innings, allowing seven hits and three earned runs while walking four and striking out six. Cortez and Sharabba combined for four of the Eagles’ five hits with two apiece.