TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — No. 5 Florida State (41-5) defeated No. 17 Clemson (33-12), 5-4, Thursday evening at JoAnne Graf Field during senior weekend for the Seminoles.
Kalei Harding hit a walk-off single through the left side to secure the victory.
Kathryn Sandercock pitched 6.1 innings to start the game, recording eight strikeouts while letting up four runs. Danielle Watson entered the circle in the top of the seventh inning, securing the final two outs for the Seminole defense by way of strikeouts. Tonight’s win marked Watson’s 13th on the season.
At the bottom of the fifth inning, Florida State finally got on the board with four runs after trailing 2-0 through the first four and a half innings. Sydney Sherrill doubled, allowing Kaley Mudge and Jahni Kerr to score. Kalei Harding then hit a home run, giving the Seminoles two more runs and putting them on top for the first time all night. Harding’s home run was her 11th of the season and ninth in conference play. Her nine home runs in ACC play lead the conference.
The Seminoles were up by a single run going into the seventh inning but a solo home run by the Tigers tied the game at 4-4. In the bottom of the seventh, Harding came in clutch and singled through the left side, allowing Amaya Ross to score from third, clinching the victory for the Seminoles.
Game two of the series against Clemson is Friday at 6 p.m. The game can be watched nationally on the ACC Network.