Softball struggles to score in Gainesville

Just when it seemed like momentum was on the USF softball team’s side, the Bulls hit a wall — also known as the No. 2 Florida Gators.

USF (12-8) went 2-3 this weekend at the University of Florida Cox Invitational in Gainesville, including two mercy-rule losses to the Gators, totaling one run in the three losses.

“It was a tough weekend for us,” said USF coach Ken Eriksen. “We have to be more competitive and take advantage of situations that we get in and not back down from challenges. We’re in this mode of not being aggressive right now.”

On offense, the Bulls were led by junior first baseman Ashley Bullion. Bullion was 2-for-3 with two doubles and RBIs in a 15-9 comeback win over Texas Tech, and hit a game-winning two-run triple in a 5-3 victory over Pacific on Saturday.

She said she is finally getting her timing back after a medical redshirt last season.

“I think the reason I was able to have success this weekend was that I’ve settled in from last year,” Bullion said. “I did what I needed to do to put our team in a position to win.”

Eriksen said he hopes Bullion’s performance can carry over to the rest of the team.

“She’s a very passionate player,” he said. “When she’s focused, she has the ability to compete at a high level. We have to maintain that type of mentality throughout the team.”

The Bulls have little time to reflect as they host two games against Maine on Tuesday
afternoon. Eriksen said his team has a lot of work ahead.

“Right now, the two games against Maine are the two biggest games of the year,” he said. “We have to play hard or we’ll put ourselves in a bad situation. We have 36 games left, and we need to buckle down and be flawless in everything we do.”