Alabama Softball Rolls Over USM
Alabama (40-8) put on an offensive showcase against Southern Miss (22-24), scoring 12 runs off 10 hits with five Golden Eagle fielding errors helping the Tide's cause.
Kallie Case went 3-5 out of the two-hole with three RBI while Haylie McCleney and Chaunsey Bell each had a pair of hits. Marisa Runyon hit her second career homer, as she has cleared the fence in two of her last three games.
Sydney Littlejohn (9-1) earned the win in the circle with five strong innings, while Leslie Jury threw two scoreless relief innings behind her. Southern Miss starter Samantha Robles (6-11) went the distance in the losing effort, allowing 12 runs, though only four of them were earned.
Alabama put three runs on the board in the top of the second, as McCleney turned on a ball and sent a double to the right-field wall, scoring Danae Hays and putting two in scoring position with two away. Case drove them both in with a single up the middle to make it 3-0, as Case was caught stealing in the next at-bat to end the half-inning.
The offenses were relatively quiet after that point, as neither team was able to add any runs to the board until the top of the sixth inning. With two outs in the inning, Hays grounded out to third but a fielding error extended the inning and allowed Danielle Richard to score from second, making it a 4-0 game. With two on and two out, Runyon entered to pinch-hit and cleared the bases with a three-run homer over the right-field fence that made it a 7-0 ballgame. A popup out of bounds ended the half-inning with Alabama holding the significant seven-run lead.
Alabama stayed hot in the seventh inning, scoring five runs to really put the game out of reach. An error put runners at the corners with nobody out and Ryan Iamurri, pinch-hitting, popped an infield single to the shortstop to score one. A single by Andrea Hawkins loaded the bases and, later in the inning with one away, a groundout scored another to put Alabama up 9-0. Jordan Patterson, a defensive replacement the last half-inning, scored two more as she poked a single into right field, stretching the lead to 11-0, while McCleney drove in the final run of the game with an infield single to make it 12-0.
This weekend, Alabama plays its final home series of the 2014 regular season as the Tide welcomes the Georgia Bulldogs (38-9, 11-7 SEC). Game one is on Thursday at 7 p.m. CDT and will be aired live on ESPN. Game two is not televised and is set for a 6:30 p.m. CT start on Friday. The series finale on Sunday will be aired on ESPNU and is set for an 11 a.m. start.
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BamaMagYesterday at 5:19 PM