Johnson powers Tide to win

TUSCALOOSA, AL -- University of Alabama senior Angela Johnson had a career night, hitting two home runs and driving in five runs helping the seventh ranked Crimson Tide softball team (20-3) to a 10-4 victory over the Jacksonville State Gamecocks (12-3).

It was the first multi-home run game and four-hit game of Johnson's career, and her second career five-RBI game. Her two runs scored tied a career high.

Alabama wasted no time, putting two runs on the board in the bottom of the first inning. Ashley Courtney took the first pitch and doubled in the right centerfield gap followed by Johnson's first home run for a 2-0 Alabama lead.

The Crimson Tide added to its lead in the second inning, starting with a lead off walk to Emily Currie. Kellie Deska doubled to left centerfield scoring Currie from first. Following a Mandy Burford lineout, Courtney was hit by a pitch. Johnson singled to right field scoring Deska and advancing Courtney to third. Bama took a 5-0 lead when Johnson attempted to steal second but was thrown out on the play, however Courtney broke for home on the throw down to second for her second run of the game.

The Gamecocks cut into the Alabama lead in the top of the fourth inning courtesy of a two-run home run off the bat of Daniela Pappano making it a 5-2 lead.

Jacksonville State further cut into the Tide's lead loading the bases with no outs. Melinda McDonald then hit a high pop fly in front of the plate, but miscommunication on the Bama infield allowed the ball to drop and the Gamecocks to score a run making it a 5-3 game.

JSU was not finished as Megan Jezierski hit her fourth home run of the season, a solo shot that hit off the scoreboard in left centerfield cutting the Bama lead to 5-4.

Alabama blew the game open in the bottom of the sixth inning scoring five runs on six hits highlighted by Johnson's second home run of the night, another two-run home run to centerfield.

Erin Wright (8-1) collected her eighth win of the season allowing four runs on five hits through six innings of work while striking out 10 batters. It was her third double-digit strikeout performance of the season. Stephanie VanBrakle came on to pitch the seventh inning and struck out two Gamecock batters.

The win moved Head Coach Patrick Murphy two victories shy of the 300 mark heading into Alabama's weekend series with 13th ranked Tennessee in Tuscaloosa.


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