Alabama star Stephanie VanBrakle (18-2) struck out 12 Wildcat batters en route to the perfect game throwing only 83 pitches. She allowed only two balls to leave the infield with a fly out to center field and a line out to left that ended the game.
"I'm really happy with the way (Steph) came out today, she was really competitive," said head coach Patrick Murphy. "She had the same attitude and look that she had last week against Tennessee."
Dani Woods put the fourth-ranked Tide (31-4, 11-0 SEC) on top in the fourth when she hit her fifth home run of the season, a two-run shot over the right field fence spotting the Alabama a 2-0 lead. Dominique Accetturo started the inning with a single deep in the hole at shortstop and was sacrificed to second by Staci Ramsey. Following a Stephanie VanBrakle pop out to second, Woods sat on the first pitch she saw and put Alabama on top.
Bama added to its lead in the fifth beginning with a leadoff double by Ashley Holcombe. Mallory Benak came on to pinch run and came around to score on a single up the middle by Mandy Burford. Brittany Rogers reached on a bunt single and Burford advanced to third when Kentucky pitcher Amy Kendall booted the ball. Jordan Praytor followed with a bunt single loading the bases with nobody out. Burford came in to score on a sacrifice fly to center field by Accetturo and Bama had a 4-0 lead.
The Crimson Tide added three more runs in the top of the seventh inning when Ramsey delivered her fifth home run of the season, a three-run shot that clipped the top of the left-centerfield fence as it went over extending the Bama lead to the final 7-0 margin.
The Alabama offense continued to apply the pressure in Game 2 as they claimed an 11-0, five-inning victory behind 12 hits and a Woods grand slam.
The Tide wasted no time jumping on top in Game 2 plating two runs in the top of the first inning. For the second time in two games it was Woods providing the offensive spark when she hit a two-out double to left centerfield scoring Rogers and Praytor for a 2-0 Alabama lead.
Woods was at it again in the third inning when with the bases loaded, she took a 1-2 pitch and put it over the right field fence for her first career grand slam, the 13th in program history and a more importantly a 6-0 Crimson Tide lead.
Alabama made it an 8-0 game in the fourth inning on a conventional two-RBI sacrifice fly from Ramsey. With the bases loaded, Ramsey drove a ball deep to centerfield that Megan Miller caught crashing into the fence. Benak, who was running for Holcombe, tagged from third and scored as did Rogers, who was at second.
Alabama wasn't finished as the Tide plated three more runs in the fifth inning courtesy of a three-run double down the left field line for Rogers extending the Crimson Tide lead to 11-0.
Chrissy Owens (11-2) collected the win going four innings, allowing no runs on three hits while striking out five batters. Blair Potter came on in relief and retired the three batters she faced to end the game.
Rogers and Woods paced the Tide offense in both games. Rogers finished with seven hits (7-8), three RBI and four runs scored. Woods went 4-6 with two home runs and double and eight RBI. Mandy Burford (3-3 in the Game1), Jordan Praytor (3-3 in Game 2) and Ashley Holcombe (2-3 in Game 2) also recorded multi-hit games for the Tide.
The two teams will get together for the series finale on Sunday at 11:30 a.m. CT.
--Stephanie VanBrakle recorded her 200th strikeout of the season, the third time in her career she has reached the 200-strikeout mark. She fell three short of 200 in 2003, her freshman season.
--Dominique Accetturo extended her hitting steak to seven games.
--Dani Woods tied her career high for home runs in a season with her fifth.
--Mandy Burford recorded a career high three hits.
--Jordan Praytor extended her hitting streak to nine.
--Woods recorded her first multi-hit game since going 3-3 on March 3 against Ohio State.
--VanBrakle recorded her 13th double-digit strikeout game of the season.
Game 2 Gm. 2 --Praytor extended her hitting streak to 10 games. Gm. 2 --Woods hit the 13th grand slam in Alabama history and the first of her career. Gm. 2 --Kentucky recorded its first base-runner of the day on a Megan Glenn single to lead off the third inning. Prior to the hit, Alabama pitchers retired 26 straight batters. Gm. 2 --Alabama's 11 runs was the most the Tide has scored in SEC play this season and the most in an SEC game since a 13-3 victory at Georgia on May 1, 2005.