The Florida A&M University softball team kicked off their fall season with a competitive game against the Tallahassee Community College Eagles Wednesday night.
The game began at 6 p.m., with many fans excited to see what the Rattlers had in store. The Rattlers started the game strong in the first three innings, with the lead entering the fourth.
Early in the fourth inning, things started to get exciting as FGCU transfer Amaya Gainer crushed a fastball curve pitch and hit a crucial home run. This allowed the Rattlers to score three runs to make the score 3-1.
“It was really exciting for me,” Gainer said. “It definitely was a slow start for me with a strikeout in the beginning, so I just had to make some adjustments to my game, and it all came together at the right time.”
The game plan for the Rattlers was very innovative Wednesday night, with an interesting tactic by interim head coach Camise Patterson to switch pitchers’ mid-gam. She wanted to give her team the edge they needed to secure the win.
“Our expectation was to come out, play aggressively, experiment and try a few different things to get everybody into the game,” Patterson said. “We wanted to give our newcomers a chance to experience what it means to play Rattler softball.”
Senior Pitcher Cris’deona Beasley, who had an impressive ten strikeouts in the spring season, started the game off for the Rattlers, setting a dominant tone that would later help teammate, Nadia Zenteno, do the same thing.
Zenteno, a Lake Wales, Florida senior, had an equally impressive five-strikeout in spring play. She came into the game and used her interchangeable speed balls to throw the Eagles off their game.
The big x-factor was senior outfielder Jania Davis. Davis had a pivotal hit late in the fourth inning, allowing two runs to score and eventually scoring herself, making the score 6-1. Davis says she was locked in when she needed to be the most.
“I definitely had a slow start today, but in my third at-bat, I made sure that I made adjustments,” Davis said. “When the pressure is on, you just have to show up for those types of plays.”
For the rest of the game, the Rattlers were in complete control, winning the game in style with a final score of 8-5.
The Rattlers will play their next match against the Eagles on October 26 at 6 p.m.