JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - Natalie Land homered and set the UCF career stolen bases record as the Knights defeated the North Florida Ospreys 3-0 Wednesday at the UNF Softball Complex.
The Knights (23-10) got off to a slow start as they were held without a base runner by the Ospreys (19-14) in the first three innings. UCF, however, broke through in the top of the fourth inning as Land led off with a solo home run to deep center field.
In the seventh inning, Land reached base on a fielder's choice. On the next pitch, she stole the 80th base of her career, breaking Cici Alvarez's school record.
Freshman Mackenzie Audas again dominated as she struck out 12 and earned her fifth shutout of the season. Audas only allowed five hits and one walk as she lowered her Conference USA-leading ERA to 1.15.
Audas, who won the Conference USA Commissioner's Academic Medal on Wednesday for excellence in the classroom, has now recorded double-digit strikeouts in each of her last three starts.
Freshmen Madeline Schroeder and Kahley Novak provided crucial insurance runs for the Knights in the fifth and sixth innings. Schroeder picked up an RBI in the fifth on a hard-hit ground ball to first base that scored Tawny Swan. Novak hit an RBI single to left field with the bases loaded in the sixth.
UCF will host East Carolina in a Conference USA doubleheader at 1 p.m. Saturday and in a single game at noon Sunday. Many former Knights will be honored between the doubleheader games as part of Alumni Weekend festivities.
Upcoming home games include a sold-out April 11 contest against in-state rival Florida. Season tickets are now $25 and are available online at UCFAthletics.com and Ticketmaster.com or by calling the UCF Athletics Ticket Office at (407) 823-1000.
UCF fans can follow all of the action on UCF All-Access with live video and audio. Fans also can follow UCFAthletics.com's Gametracker as well as www.twitter.com/UCF_Softball.