In softball, pitching is usually the name of the game, and a big name for Alabama is Alexis Osorio. The sophomore picked up her second career no-hitter Saturday in the Panther Invitational in Atlanta as the Crimson Tide ran its record to 9-1 with two shutout wins.
Osorio was nearly perfect in Alabama’s 7-0 win over Mercer. The Tide also defeated tournament host Georgia State, 9-0 in a game shortened to six innings by softball’s mercy rule.
While Osorio was clearly the star of the day, Bama pitching was stingy in both games, allowing Mercer (3-3) and Georgia State (3-6) a combined four hits, all, obviously, by Georgia State. Bama pitchers had 15 strikeouts.
Osorio was just a one hit-by-pitch away from a perfect game, allowing just one base runner. It was her second career no-hitter. She had one last year against Pacific.
After going 15-up, 15-down through five innings, Mercer’s Kaytlin Haney was hit by a pitch to lead off the sixth and erase the perfect game. Osorio rebounded to retire the next three batters and then did the same in the bottom of the seventh to end the game and cap the no-hitter.
It was the 29th no-hitter in program history. On Wednesday, before heading to Atlanta, three Bama pitchers combined for a no-hitter against UAB in Birmingham.
Alabama (9-1) pitching was stingy in the circle against both Mercer (3-3) and Georgia State (3-6), shutting them out with just four hits and 15 strikeouts. All four hits came from the Panthers, as Osorio threw a no-hitter against the Bears in the opener, just one hit-by-pitch away from a perfect game. Offensively,
The Crimson Tide offense wasn’t idle, and was helped by four Mercer errors.
Chandler Dare posted two multi-hit games, going a combined 5-8 with a pair of doubles and three RBIs. Alabama found a power surge on Saturday, blasting three home runs. Leona Lafaele, Reagan Dykes, and Peyton Grantham had the round-trippers. Bama had just two homers in the first eight games this year. The top three in the Tide order went a combined 5-11 with seven RBIs, including Dykes’ first career home run as part of a 2-3 day batting third.
Demi Turner, who has been on a tear, had a bases-loaded double that cleared the bases as part of a five-run second inning in the win over Mercer. Dare followed with her second RBI double of the game in the next at-bat to score Turner before Dykes hit an RBI single to score Dare and make it 6-0. Dykes’ solo homer in the fifth ended the scoring.
The second game against Georgia State was more of the same.
Sydney Littlejohn pitched the shutout.
Dare and Lafaele both had three hits in the win, including a sixth-inning homer for Lafaele. Grantham went 2-4 batting seventh in the order, scoring twice, and smashing a three-run homer to help the Tide pull away late.
Littlejohn earned the complete-game win, striking out a season-high seven batters.
Alabama concludes its weekend at the Panther Invitational with a rematch against Maryland (2-6) on Sunday at 9 a.m. CT.