Bulls baserunning moves USF win streak to six


The Bulls used better pitching and took advantage of defensive blunders to sweep the St. John’s Red Storm in a doubleheader on Wednesday afternoon.

“Every team in the Big East can play,” assistant coach Monica Triner said. “Their starter in the second could really pitch. It was good to get a couple wins on an afternoon in the middle of the week.”

Senior pitcher Lindsey Richardson started both games for the Bulls before junior Sara Nevins entered each game in relief.

The duo allowed two runs on six hits in 14 innings of work.

This season, Richardson has started seven more games than Nevins, but Nevins has pitched 18 and 2/3 more innings Richardson.

Triner said there’s no preferred pitching order, and that was no different against the Red Storm.

“It just came down to matchups,” she said. “We liked the way Lindsey’s cutter spins against their hitters. That’s why we started her in both games, and then we brought in Nevins because they hadn’t faced her yet.”

USF struck first in the fourth inning of the first game when St. John’s shortstop Erin Burner misplayed a line drive off the bat of freshman outfielder Erica Nunn. Junior utility player Ilaura Reeves scored to take the 1-0 lead.

The Bulls were able to cash in on another error in the sixth inning to stretch the lead to four.

Junior infielder Dani Wayt laid down a bunt with sophomore outfielder Allie Patierno on second base and freshman catcher Lee Ann Spivey on third.

As Spivey slid into home plate, the ball was knocked out of the catcher’s glove. When the catcher tried to retrieve the ball, Patierno took off from third and hustled in to score, drawing an enthusiastic high-five from coach Ken Eriksen.

Wayt then scored on an infield single by sophomore outfielder D’Anna Devine for the final run of the game.

Spivey got things started for the Bulls in the second game, driving in junior shortstop Kourtney Salvarola on a fielder’s choice.

USF stole four bases in the fourth inning to put pressure on St. John’s, which forced a Red Storm wild pitch, passed ball and throwing error to second base in hopes of stopping a stolen base.

The Bulls squeezed three runs out of the Red Storm in the fourth inning.

Spivey, fresh off being named to the Women’s Junior National team, hit a solo home run in the fifth inning to give USF a 5-2 cushion which led to the Bulls’ win.

With a six-game winning streak and 23 wins in their last 24 games, Spivey said the team’s confidence is very high.

“I have complete confidence in everyone on this team,” she said. “No matter whose batting or whose pitching.”

USF (29-11, 7-1 Big East) will travel to Pittsburgh this weekend to take on the Panthers (14-16, 3-3 Big East) in a three-game series on Saturday and Sunday before a rematch against the Florida Gators in Gainesville on Wednesday.