UCF softball drops another game to FSU in NCAA Regional

UCF softball couldn’t dig out of an early hole, falling to 15th-seed Florida State, 5-1 on Day 2 of the NCAA Tallahassee Regional Saturday at JoAnne Graf Field.

Saturday’s game was the second consecutive season in which these two programs have met in the NCAA Regional, with UCF also falling short in a 5-1 loss to FSU on May 20, 2023. The Knights (0-15) haven’t beaten the Seminoles since 2011.

Florida State (45-14) scored five runs in the top of the second inning as Amaya Ross opened the scoring with a sacrifice fly. A wild pitch by Knights starting pitcher Kaitlyn Felton (11-6) led to a throwing error by catcher Jada Cody that enabled FSU to score two more runs.

Felton was pulled by coach Cindy Ball-Malone and replaced by Katelyn Cochran, who gave up an RBI double by right fielder Kalei Harding.

UCF (31-24) scored its run in the fifth when shortstop Jasmine Williams scored on an RBI single by third baseman Sierra Humphreys. But the Knights could not get much else going against pitcher Ashtyn Danley, who worked 2 2/3 scoreless innings to lock down the victory.

FSU starting pitcher Mimi Gooden (5-1) surrendered a run on 3 hits and a strikeout in 4 1/3 innings.

Angelina DeVoe held the Seminoles to just 3 hits over 5 1/3 innings in relief, walking 3 and striking out 3.

Florida State advances to the regional championship on Sunday.

The loss sent UCF to the second elimination game (10 p.m., ESPN+) of the day against the winner of the first elimination game between Auburn and Chattanooga.

Matt Murschel can be reached at mmurschel@orlandosentinel.com