BOCA RATON, Fla. -- No. 18 UCF posted its 15th shutout of the season, topping Florida Atlantic 2-0 at the FAU Softball Stadium on Thursday afternoon. The Knights came out on top in a pitcher's duel, improving to 31-5 on the season.
"Just knowing how tough FAU is right now, they're getting votes in the Top 25 and are a very solid team with solid pitching and solid hitting, we knew coming into this we had to play our best game," said UCF head coach Renee Luers-Gillispie. "I was very excited for the girls in this game because they came out and they executed."
Shelby Turnier earned her 15th win of the season, allowing just three hits while fanning eight batters in seven innings. The teams combined for just one hit in the first two inning, but the UCF bats warmed up in the third inning.
Brittany Solis opened the third inning with a single up the middle. A sacrifice bunt and a ground out moved Solis over to third. Kahley Novak sent Solis home with an RBI single out to right field.
Samantha McCloskey opened the fifth inning with a double to right center. Andrea Neswiacheny advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt from Solis and scored on an RBI single from senior Maddy Schroeder. UCF held a 2-0 advantage after five complete innings.
The Owls threatened the UCF lead in the bottom of the sixth. With two outs and a runner on first, FAU used a UCF throwing error to put two runners on. A walk loaded the bases for the Owls, but Farrah Sullivan got the Knights out of the jam as she collected the third out to end the inning.
With one out in the bottom of the seventh, Laura Mann doubled to center field. FAU's pinch runner was left on second as a line drive and a ground out ended the game.
Maddy Schroeder went 2-for-2 with an RBI in the game. Samantha McCloskey finished with a pair of hits.