Jessica Burroughs is headed back to Oklahoma City.
In 2014, Burroughs, a Houston County product, played in the College World Series for Florida State as a redshirt freshman. She played four innings, allowing three hits and two runs while striking out five, so her presence was minimal.
In 2016, she will have a bigger role.
The CWS starts Thursday and come Noon, she will be ready for redemption. The difference for Burroughs between the two years is experience.
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She said the experience of having played in a CWS has helped her gain more confidence in herself. What has also helped her gain confidence is being left in tough situations to get her team out of jams.
Burroughs recalled a game against Florida this season.
“There was one out, and the bases were loaded,” she said. “With the score tied 0-0, I struck out the next two and was able to get my team out.”
She said she remembers moments like that to help her stay relaxed and poised in distressing scenarios. Coming off a strong season, Burroughs isn’t stressed going into the game against Georgia.
Through the regular season, Burroughs played in 37 games, starting 30. She posted a 1.93 ERA with 112 hits and a 27-5 record.
And after continuing her hot streak through the early rounds of the NCAA Tournament, Burroughs has a slight advantage going into the CWS. She already has faced four of the teams in the CWS — Auburn, UCLA and Michigan.
She said it’s nice that the Seminoles have played half of the teams in the CWS.
“It’s good we got that information on them,” she said.
While Georgia is a one of the teams Burroughs hasn’t faced yet, she doesn’t feel any pressure.
“Everyone is equal,” she said. “Absolutely not, there is no pressure. It’s going to be more fun than pressure.”
And Seminoles head coach Lonnie Alameda has the same mindset.
“A lot of people talk about big games,” Alameda said. “It’s the same game — it’s just a softball game. (But) when you’re in those big games, it means something.”
Burroughs has at least two big games coming up for her. The task is to use what she learned two years ago from Lacey Waldrop and translate that on the field.
Alameda said she has been working with Burroughs to be a mentor and guide for the pitchers under her and help her understand the mental side of the game. Burroughs is now ready to execute.
“It’s very overwhelming but exciting to be apart of,” Burroughs said.