Tide Softball Wins, Moves To Finals
The second-seeded Crimson Tide (51-5) will take on top-seed Florida (61-2) on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. on Fox Sports. The Gators have not lost since dropping the opening game of a doubleheader on March 12 to the Tide in Tuscaloosa. UF has won 34 straight games.
Morgan (15-2) earned the win in the circle, allowing three runs on five hits with four strikeouts. She also went 1 for 1 at the plate with a two-run home run in the third inning and three walks, including two intentional passes.
Kelsi Dunne earned her fourth save of the season, pitching the final 1.1 innings with two strikeouts, including the final out of the sixth and seventh inning.
Jordan Praytor paced the Tide's eight-hit attack, going 3 for 3 with a RBI double. Dani Woods and Larsen also had RBI for Alabama.
Cody Trahan (18-5) started in the circle and lasted 2.2 innings before being lifted in place of Tiffany Garcia. Garcia allowed five runs – four earned – on four this with five walks.
LSU got to Morgan in the top of the third inning on Shannon Stein's two-strike RBI single to right field. Jazz Jackson came around to score on the play after drawing a one-out walk. Morgan worked out of a two-on, one-out jam by getting Rachel Mitchell to ground back to the pitcher and Quinlan Duhon to strikeout.
Morgan would pick herself up in the bottom half of the inning with a towering two-run home run to straight-away center field that put the Crimson Tide on top, 2-1. It was her 16th home run of the season and RBI 67 and 68.
The Tide extended the lead to 3-1 in the bottom of the fourth inning on Larsen's solo home run down the left field line. It was Larsen's eighth home run of the season and 32nd RBI.
LSU gave Alabama a little help later in the fourth inning as center fielder Rachel Mitchell dropped a routine fly ball with two outs that allowed the inning to continue and Praytor to score from second base for a 4-1 lead.
Duhon, who had a big weekend against the Tide earlier in the season, continued to cause Alabama trouble in the sixth inning with a massive solo home run to left field. With two outs in the inning, Erika Sluss cut the lead one run a 4-3 with a full-count single to left field.
Morgan hit the next batter to put runners on first and second base and that would end her night. Dunne came on and struck out the next batter swinging on three pitches.
As it has done all season the Alabama offense struck right back as Brittany Rogers led off the inning with a single to center field that extended her hitting streak to nine games. Praytor then delivered an RBI double into the left-center field gap for her third hit of the night.
Morgan was then intentionally walked for the second time in the game and Kelley Montalvo drew a conventional walk to load the bases. LSU would the make a pitching change, replacing Garcia with rarely used Casey Faile. Woods singled to right field to plate a run with the Tide's seventh run scoring on a wild pitch.
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