Alabama Softball Wins Two More

DELAND, Fla. -- The Alabama softball team ran its record to 4-0 in the Stetson University Hatter Invitational with two more victories Saturday. One of the wins was Bama's second of the tournament against Ohio State and the other was against host team Stetson.

Alabama defeated Ohio State, 5-4, in the first Tide game of the day, then downed Stetson, 1-0.

Alabama, ranked eighth in the nation, improved its record to 5-2.

The Crimson Tide had defeated Rhode Island and Ohio State in first round games Friday.

Although Alabama has already defeated Ohio State twice in the tournament, the teams will play for the championship Sunday with first pitch at 10 a.m. EST (9 a.m. central time).

Here's a look at Saturday's games:

Game 1

Sophomore Jazlyn Lunceford batted in the eventual game winning run in the bottom of the fifth inning and the No. 8 Alabama softball team held on to defeat No. 14 Ohio State, 5-4 Saturday afternoon.

Trailing 4-3 headed into the bottom of the fifth, Cassandra Reilly-Boccia drilled a leadoff home run over the right field wall to tie the game. Alex Blewitt reached on a fielder's choice and Catherine Dozier entered to pinch run. Dozier advanced to second on a wild pitch. Lunceford came through in the clutch for the second consecutive day, hitting in Dozier with a single through the left side that clipped off the pitchers glove.

Alabama earned the first run of the game in the bottom of the second. Courtney Conley reached base on an error by the first baseman, stole second and was batted in on Kayla Braud's single to left.

Ohio State struck back in the top of the third, scoring three runs. Vanessa Spears singled with one out and after two more singles was brought in on an RBI single from Sam Marder. The Buckeyes two other runs came on a throwing error, taking the score to 3-1 in favor of Ohio State.

The scoring would continue in the bottom of the third, with Alabama answering Ohio State's call. Reilly-Boccia singled through the right side and Charlotte Morgan followed with a double to right center. Whitney Larsen singled to center, scoring Reilly-Boccia and advancing Morgan to third. Morgan would come into score on a fielder's choice hit by Alex Blewitt. The two runs tied the score at 3-3.

The Buckeyes pushed across a single run in the top of the fourth to retake the lead. Leah Ledford singled to right-center and came around to score on Dee Dee Hillman's double down the right field line. The 4-3 lead would not hold though, as Alabama came back to score two in the bottom of the fifth.

Kelsi Dunne earned the win in relief for Alabama. Dunne, now 2-2 on the season, struck out four of the 10 batters she faced and did not allow a hit.

Megan Miller was tagged with the loss for Ohio State. Miller walked two of the four batters she faced and was responsible for Alabama's go-ahead run in the fifth.

Game 2

Alabama freshman pitcher Lauren Sewell earned a 1-0 shutout victory with a one-hit performance in her first start in a Crimson Tide uniform to lead Alabama over Stetson Saturday afternoon at Patricia Wilson Field.

Sewell was efficient in the circle, using only 93 pitches to go the distance. The rookie struck out 10 and walked three and allowed the one hit in her starting debut.

The one run was all Sewell would need as the two teams both matched zeros on the scoreboard until the fifth inning.

Alabama sophomore catcher Olivia Gibson started the inning by laying down a bunt single. She was pinch-run for by Catherine Dozier, who was bunted over by newcomer Jackey Branham. Fellow freshman Kayla Braud provided the big hit with a single up the middle that plated Dozier from second.

The Crimson Tide collected seven hits with Braud and sophomore Cassandra Reilly-Boccia leading the way with a pair of knocks.

Stetson hurler Amanda Lindsay was tagged with the loss after allowing one run while striking out nine and walking three.

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