Slammin the Salukis

CLEARWATER, Fla. ( - Behind home runs from Jazmine Esparza, Courtney Rotton, and Kaitlyn Jensen, the Knights grabbed a win over Southern Illinois, 8-3, in their second game of the day. UCF fell to Western Michigan, 6-3, earlier on Saturday to bring the Knights to 16-9 overall.

Rotton went 3-for-4 on the day with a triple and a home run along with eight total bases and a 2.000 slugging percentage. Megan Greenwell loaded on three hits, while Esparza and Jensen racked up two hits and three RBI each.

Alea White got the start in each game throwing a total of eight innings carrying a 0.88 earned run average and four strikeouts.

Kamryn Toney came in to relief in both games tossing five innings allowing only one run for a 1.40 ERA.

Game One
The Broncos loaded the bases in the second inning with one out but the Knights ended the Western Michigan threat after grabbing a strikeout and a fly ball to left field.
Western Michigan put the pressure on the Knights in the third after plating two runs followed by a grand slam to go up 6-0 on UCF.

The Knights answered in the fourth with three runs of their own after Rotton drew a walk and Johnson reached on a Bronco mistake bringing up Klarkowski. The sophomore smacked a single to left center to drive in Rotton and Jazmine Esparza followed with a double to left plating Johnson and Klarkowski.

The two-out rally wouldn't be enough for the Knights as they dropped their first game of the Showcase to Western Michigan, 6-3.

White recorded the loss, while Kamryn Toney came in to relieve White tossing three innings giving up three hits and no runs.

Game Two
The Knights wasted no time to get ahead of Southern Illinois in game two after Rotton ripped a triple to right field to knock in Greenwell and strike first with a 1-0 lead.

UCF continued to tack on the runs as Bejarano led of the fifth inning with a walk and Lange replaced her on the bases. Greenwell stepped up to the plate and delivered a single, and Rotton was hit by a pitch to load the bases for Jensen. The freshman singled to knock in Greenwell and Lange to go up, 3-0, on the Salukis. The Knights weren't done as Johnson singled to score Kaylee Misiti, who pinch ran for Jensen, and Rotton to extend their lead to 5-0.

The offense continued to sore for the Knights in the sixth inning when Esparza blasted a solo home run to left center and UCF was quickly up by six.

The Salukis mustered up three runs in the bottom of the sixth on three hits to put pressure on the Knights, but UCF answered in the top of the seventh after Rotton ripped a shot to left field for a solo homer and Jensen followed with her sixth home run of the season to make it 8-3.

Greenwell and Rotton each finished the game 3-for-3, while Jensen went 2-for-4 with three RBI.

White pitched a solid five innings giving up four hits and two runs to earn the win to move to 12-6 on the season.

The Knights cap off the Under Armour Showcase against the Quinnipiac Bobcats on Sunday slated for an 11:15 a.m. first pitch. The game will feature a live stream and stats found on the UCF softball schedule page.

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