Ninth-ranked Alabama didn’t have to wait long to rally from behind and defeat South Carolina, 7-3, Friday, but the Crimson Tide will have to wait a day to see how the rest of the three-game series goes. Alabama (29-3 and 6-1 in Southeastern Conference play) and South Carolina 20-11, 1-6) have already postponed Saturday action with heavy rains expected and will conclude the series with a doubleheader starting at 11 a.m. CDT Sunday.
The Gamecocks drew first blood at Rhoads Stadium Friday with leadoff batter Kaylea Snaer touching Alabama starter Sydney Littlejohn for a home run.
But Alabama responded by tying the game in the bottom of the first, scoring four runs in the second (in part because of a collision error), and finishing the seven-run production with two more in the third.
Demi Turner set the offensive tone at the leadoff spot, going 3-4 with three runs scored. Bailey Hemphill drove in a pair of runs on a first-inning double and a third-inning single. Mari Cranek had a pair of doubles and got an RBI on a bases-loaded walk.
Littlejohn (10-1) earned the win with 6 2/3 innings, giving up 7 hits, 3 earned runs, striking out 4, and walking only 1. Madi Moore entered in the seventh to secure the final out. Jessica Elliott (8-5) took the loss.
Alabama got the game even in the bottom of the first as Hemphill’s double off the wall in center field scored Turner.
With the bases loaded and two outs in the second inning, a collision in the outfield resulted in a dropped ball and allowed two Alabama runners to score. Peyton Grathan added another with an RBI single and a bases-loaded walk to Cranek made it 5-1.
Elissa Brown and Turner led off the bottom of the third with back-to-back hits and with the help of a couple of sacrifice hits made it 7-1.
The Gamecocks chiseled into the deficit with a solo home run by Mackenzie Boesel in the top of the sixth, making it 7-2, before an RBI single by Taylor Williams added a third run.