ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - Senior Natalie Land had a great all-around effort as she went 3-for-3 with two RBI, two runs scored and two stolen bases in the UCF softball team’s 8-1 win over Stetson on Wednesday at the UCF Softball Complex.
The Knights (35-13) jumped on the Hatters (23-19) early with a four-run second inning. With the bases loaded and no outs, Land hit a two-run double into the gap in right-center field. Freshman Kahley Novak, hitting in the No. 2 spot for the first time all season, then plated two more runs for the Knights with an two-run single into right.
The Black and Gold broke the game open in the sixth with four more runs. Land led off the inning with a single and stole second. The theft was her second of the game and her 36th of the season. Land now has 95 steals for her career, just five short of the all-time Conference USA record.
Pinch-hitting senior Lindsay Selmer then scored Land from second with an RBI double into left-center field. Senior Tawny Swan and freshman Madeline Schroeder later hit back-to-back RBI singles to put the game out of reach.
Freshman Mackenzie Audas earned her 19th victory of the season after allowing just four hits and one unearned run in six innings. Audas struck out eight to increase her conference-leading total to 226, and she lowered her league-best ERA to 1.09 on the year. Junior Alex Hartshorn pitched a scoreless seventh to finish the game.
The Knights will return to Conference USA action on Saturday as they host rival Houston in a doubleheader beginning at 1 p.m. This will mark Senior Weekend for the UCF softball team, and tickets are available online at UCFAthletics.com and Ticketmaster.com or by calling the UCF Athletics Ticket Office at (407) 823-1000.
UCF fans can follow all of the action on UCF All-Access with live video and audio. Fans also can follow UCFAthletics.com's Gametracker as well as www.twitter.com/UCF_Softball.