BY: John Mamola

The Florida Gators women’s softball team takes home their first national championship with a 6-3 win on Thursday night over Alabama.  Kirsti Merritt hit a 3-run home run which was the key to the Gators improving to 5-0 against the Crimson Tide in WCWS play.

The Gators swept the championship series taking both games against Alabama, and improves on their tournament record of a national runner-up in 2009 and 2011 by taking home the title.

Jackie Traina had a rough night as she gave up five runs in 1 1-3 innings before getting pulled for Alabama in the second inning.   Florida coach Tim Walton chose not to start ace Hannah Rogers, but she entered the game in the sixth inning after Lauren Haeger and Delanie Gourley gave her a lead. She gave up one run in two innings. Merritt helped her with a spectacular diving catch in center field for the first out in the top of the seventh.