Offense dominates, Rattlers sweep series

Durable pitching and timely hitting helped the Florida A&M softball team capitalize on leads to get a sweep in the double header against Savannah State Tigers this weekend at the Lady Rattlers softball Complex.Florida A&M opened the series looking to be aggressive on the offensive side. Sophomore Tara Vincent hit an RBI single to third base that led to a scored run by sophomore outfielder Jasmin Donaldson.Senior catcher Joyce Harold hammered a home run over the left field fence that gave Florida A&M a 2-0 lead on a two ball two strike pitch count in the second inning. Harold would lead the team going two-for-three from the plate setting the tone for the Florida A&M bats throughout game one.“I’ve just been working on my hitting, trying to stay focused on one pitch at a time and focus on one hit at a time,” said Harold. “I just stepped up to the plate and was confident in myself and was able to just hit it over.”Florida A&M scored two more runs in the fourth inning on a ground out single to the Savannah State shortstop and off a wild pitch by Savannah State’s Madison Hedderly, giving Florida A&M the 4-0 lead. The Rattlers final runs would come in the sixth inning where sophomore outfielder Tenisha Dixon would score an unearned run on a throwing error by Savannah State and freshman first base player Arianna Stewart would score athome after an RBI single by catcher. Senior Amanda Reyes’ allowed the Rattlers to play game one at a comfortable pace. The significance behind her effort was that Reyes retired the first 14 hitters in the game until the catcher for Savannah State broke up the no-hitter in the bottom up the fifth inning, which would have capped off a perfect pitching game for Reyes.“You try not to think about it because you don’t want it to affect the way you are throwing,” said Reyes.”You make small adjustments to who you are playing against and when it doesn’t fall through you don’t want it to mess up the rest of the game because you still have a whole game and winning is what really matters.”It took the Rattlers four innings to score in game two, but they were able to score six consecutive runs putting them ahead of Savannah State 6-0.Sophomore Tara Vincent started off the fourth inning with an RBI double down the line that would score a run for senior third base player Melissa Oliphant. The last run was scored by junior outfielder Shayla Clark after sophomore Dixon tripled to left field.Savannah State drove in two runs in the top of the sixth inning, but Reyes would secure the 7-2 victory, giving up only two hits and two earned runs striking out 10 hitters in seven innings