LSU Takes Softball Series from Tide

The No. 2 University of Alabama softball team left 12 runners on base to suffer its second straight loss to No. 9 LSU on Sunday at Tiger Park in Baton Rouge, La.

Down 3-0 heading into the seventh inning, the Crimson Tide started off with back-to-back singles by Jordan Praytor and Lauren Parker. However, much like the rest of the game, Alabama could not convert as Dani Hofer came in and got the next three batters out to pick up the save and complete the Tiger's shutout of the Tide. It was the first time in 2007 that Alabama did not score in a game.

Alabama stranded 10 runners in six innings. The leadoff batter reached base in the third, fourth and fifth inning but could not manage any runs. They left the bases loaded in the first and sixth inning inning, left one runner in both the third and fourth and two runners in the fifth. LSU also stranded 10 runners but were able to score three in the contest.

The Tide loaded the bases with two outs in the first inning but could not take advantage. Three straight batters reached base after LSU starter Emily Turner retired the first two batters. Lauren Parker and Charlotte Morgan recorded back-to-back singles and Mandy Burford walked. Dani Woods then stepped up to the plate and hit a high fly ball to deep center but it was caught to end the inning.

With two outs in the sixth inning, the Crimson Tide also loaded the bases. Katie Johnson drew a walk, Ashley Holcombe struck out but reached on a passed ball and Kelley Montalvo hit an infield single up the middle. However, Brittany Rogers hit a grounder back to Turner on the mound to end the threat.

Emily Turner pitched six shutout innings for the Tigers. She gave up 10 hits and one walk with four strikeouts but did not allow a run. She improved to 11-4 on the year. Chrissy Owens received her first loss of the year, falling to 16-1 with the loss. She allowed three runs on 10 hits with one walk and two strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings.

LSU broke a scoreless tie with one run in the third inning. With one out the top of the order came up and tallied three straight singles. The third hit of the inning was a single to left field by Leslie Klein that drove in Dee Dee Henderson from second base. Despite loading the bases the Tigers only managed to score one run in the inning as Alabama ace Chrissy Owens pitched her way out of a jam.

The Tigers added another run in the fourth and sixth innings. Vanessa Soto led off by reaching base in both innings. In the fourth, Soto doubled to center field. A wild pitch moved her to third base and then Andrea Smith hit a single to left field to drive in Soto to make the score 2-0. Soto was hit by a pitch to start the sixth. With two outs Jazz Jackson lined a single to left field and Erika Sluss, who pinchran for Soto, came around to score when Mandy Burford mishandled the ball in left field.

Leslie Klein and Andrea Smith were each 2-of-3 with one RBI while Jazz Jackson and Killian Roessner also added two hits. Parker was 3-for-4 to lead the Tide while Praytor and Montalvo each had two hits in the contest.

The Crimson Tide falls to 31-3 on the season and 10-3 in the SEC. LSU improves to 31-4 and 7-2 in conference play.

Alabama will return to Tuscaloosa for a doubleheader with Louisiana Tech Tuesday night at the Alabama Softball Complex. The first pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m. and senior Mallory Benak will be honored with Mallory Benak Night at the ballpark.

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