DeLand, Fla. - Senior pitcher Nicole Peltz (Navarre, Fla.) threw her second consecutive shutout and recorded a career-high 10 strikeouts to lead the Stetson softball team (16-12, 1-1 Atlantic Sun) to a 1-0 win over visiting North Florida (11-16, 1-1 A-Sun) in the nightcap of the league-opening doubleheader for both teams Wednesday at Patricia Wilson Field. Peltz also drove in the winning run with a suicide squeeze bunt in the bottom of the sixth.
Peltz and UNF pitcher Shaina Dent engaged in a tense shutout duel for five and a half innings until the Hatters finally broke through with a run in the bottom of the sixth. Junior third baseman Jill Semento (Umatilla, Fla.) drew a leadoff walk, went to second on a wild pitch and then made it to third when catcher Airen Payne's pickoff attempt sailed into center field. Peltz then dropped down a perfectly executed squeeze bunt as Semento raced home just ahead of the throw from Ospreys third baseman Jackie Reese.
Peltz set the side down in order in the seventh to preserve the victory, striking out left fielder Alyson Bailey to end the game for her first career double-digit strikeout game. Peltz's previous high had been five strikeouts; she has not allowed a run in her last 16.2 innings in the circle. Peltz had one of Stetson's five hits off Dent in the game while senior center fielder Amy Joyce (Lake Mary, Fla.) and sophomore left fielder Brittany Knipp (Land O'Lakes, Fla.) each stole bases.
The Ospreys picked up a 3-1 win in the opening game as five singles led to two runs in the top of the first. Senior pitcher Amanda Lindsey (Byhalia, Miss.) got the Hatters on the board with her sixth home run of the season, a leadoff solo shot to center field in the bottom of the second off starter Devyn Findley, but Stetson never could make it all the way back.
First baseman Caroline Torre gave UNF some breathing room with an RBI double in the top of the seventh; Dent earned a save by coming on in relief with two out in the bottom of the seventh and striking out Stetson senior pinch hitter Megan Voeller (Jensen Beach, Fla.) with the bases loaded to end the game.
Lindsey's home run was the 20th of her career, making her the fourth Hatter in program history to reach that milestone, and tied her for 10th place on the Stetson all-time list with 77 career RBI.
The Hatters take the weekend off for the first time this season and return to Patricia Wilson Field on Tuesday for a non-conference doubleheader with Cornell. First pitch is at 5 p.m.; check out Live Stats and Jamie Bataille's Hatter Vision broadcast at www.GoHatters.com.