Madi Moore pitched a complete game with a career-high seven strikeouts and Demi Turner tied her career with four hits as the Alabama softball team completed its season-opening tournament with a 5-0 record Sunday. The Crimson Tide defeated host Coastal Carolina 9-3 in the Kickin’ Chicken Classic in Conway, S.C.
Alabama fans will be able to welcome the undefeated Crimson Tide to Rhoads Stadium for the home opener at 5 p.m. CST Wednesday as the Tide hosts also undefeated South Alabama (4-0).
Alabama scored nine runs on 16 hits, overcoming an early 2-0 lead by Coastal Carolina (3-2). Turner went 4-5 at the plate, while freshmen Bailey Hemphill and Gabby Callaway were each a perfect 3-3. Hemphill slugged a two-run home run in the fifth inning, her third homer of the season, and Sydney Booker added another two-run homer three batters later, her second of the season.
Alabama had four hits over the first three innings but could not capitalize on its scoring opportunities. In the bottom of the third with a runner on second and one out, the Tide tried to get the runner out heading to third but the ball kicked out of the defender’s glove, allowing Coastal Carolina to get two runners into scoring position on the error. With two outs in the inning, the Chanticleers took the first lead of the game with a two-run single up the middle.
The Tide answered the next inning, leading off the top of the fourth with four-straight singles to score one run and load the bases before Coastal Carolina made a pitching change. Booker then pulled a ball to the left side which was booted by the Chanticleer third baseman, allowing two runs to score and give Alabama a 3-2 lead. Turner added one to the Tide’s lead with an RBI single that made it 4-2.
Hemphill added another pair of runs in the top of the fifth with a two-run home run to center field. Callaway followed with a first-pitch single which forced the Chanticleers to make another pitching change and Booker welcomed her to the game two batters later with a two-run home run to make it 8-2.
With the bases loaded and two out in the top of the sixth, Callaway beat out an infield single as everyone moved up 60 feet to stretch the lead to 9-2. The lead remained the same heading into the final half-inning but Coastal Carolina didn’t go down quietly, loading the bases with nobody out. A sacrifice fly would give them one late run but a double play ended the game as Alabama held on to win 9-3.