Alabama Athletics

Alexis Osorio expected to start for Alabama against South Alabama

Alabama moves into top five in national softball polls

Alabama softball pitcher Alexis Osorio was understandably confused last week in her first appearance of the season against Coastal Carolina in the Kickin’ Chicken Classic in Conway,S.C.
Twice in that game the Coastal Carolina bench cheered as their teammates hit pop foul outs.
“I got a little confused about that,” Osorio said.
The explanation was that those were the only two pitches by Osorio that Coastal Carolina players were able to get a bat on the ball.
Every other pitch in the game from the junior was either a strike or a ball…and mostly strikes.
Osorio struck out 19 of the 21 batters she faced in throwing a perfect game.
Osorio was pitching exceptionally well, but perhaps not paying real close attention to the situation. “I didn’t realize it was a perfect game until we had the last batter out,” she said. “Well, I knew no one had a hit or a walk, so I had a clue.”
Osorio also threw 4 2/3 innings of perfect relief in getting a second win in the tournament as Bama has opened up 5-0.
Alabama fans will get to see the Crimson Tide at home for the only time in nine games to start the season when Bama hosts South Alabama — also 5-0 — at 5 p.m. CST Wednesday in Rhoads Stadium.
Alabama Coach Patrick Murphy said he would “probably” start Osorio Wednesday, but hoped that he got to use all three of his pitchers. Senior Sydney Littlejohn and sophomore Madi Moore are the other pitchers.
Murphy said that he expects good competition from South Alabama because of the Jaguars pitching staff. Presumably, USA is thinking the same about Alabama.
The Crimson Tide’s good start has moved the Tide into the top five in both national softball polls, No. 4 in the ESPN.com/USA and No. 5 in the USA Today/NFCA. Alabama jumped ahead two spots in the NFCA poll and three spots in the USA Softball poll for its first top-five appearance of the season. Preseason No. 1 Oklahoma fell to No. 4/6 after a pair of losses on opening weekend as Florida claimed this week’s top spot in both polls. Auburn and Florida State are at No. 2 and 3, respectively, in both lists while UCLA is at No. 5 in the USA Softball poll.
Alabama is one of nine SEC schools ranked in this week’s top 25, the most of any conference. Ranked SEC teams include Florida (1/1), Auburn (2/2), Alabama (4/5), LSU (7/8), Georgia (12/12), Tennessee (15/14), Missouri (17/13), Texas A&M (19/17) and Kentucky (22/23). South Carolina and Ole Miss are both receiving votes outside the top 25.
Following Alabama’s home game against South Alabama Wednesday, the Tide will travel to No. 18 Louisiana-Lafayette for a three-game series beginning Friday.


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