Softball Continues Winning Ways

Columbus, Ga. -- Alabama turned on the offense in the Leadoff Classic Saturday as the seventh ranked Crimson Tide defeated No. 4 Michigan early in the day, then came back with victory over Nebraska.



Here's a look at Alabama's two games.

Game 1

Trailing 6-2 entering the final inning the No. 7 ranked Alabama softball team rallied for eight runs on the strength of three home runs to sink No. 4 Michigan, 10-6 Saturday afternoon at the Leadoff Classic. With the win the Crimson Tide improve to 11-2 on the season and have now won 10 in a row.

Entering the seventh inning after giving up five runs in the previous two frames the Crimson Tide showed resolve. Sophomore Jennifer Fenton started the scoring barrage by crossing the plate off an error by the left fielder.

With the bases loaded junior Whitney Larsen provided the heroics with a blast to left-centerfield that cleared the bases to give Alabama the 7-6 lead. The Crimson Tide was not done though as sophomore Jazlyn Lunceford and freshman Courtney Conley each went deep to extend the lead to the final 10-6 score.

The two teams were knotted at one up until Michigan put three more on the board in the bottom of the fifth. Alabama got one back when sophomore Amanda Locke hit a prodigious blast to left-center to make the score 4-2. The Wolverines would answer right back by plating two more runs in the bottom half of the sixth.

Freshman Kayla Braud paced the Tide at the plate with a 2-for-4 effort, scoring two runs and drawing a walk. Sophomore Cassie Reilly-Boccia batted 2-for-3 with a run while the freshman Conley also collected two hits and drove in two.

Charlotte Morgan started the game and then came in to wrap it up in the seventh. The senior tossed 5 1/3 innings and allowed three runs on five hits while fanning three. Freshman Lauren Sewell earned the win by throwing 1 2/3 innings of relief to improve to 3-0 on the season.

Alabama tagged Michigan All-American Nikki Nemitz for eight runs – seven earned on 11 hits to fall to 1-3 on the season.

Game 2

On the heels of an eight run seventh inning in a comeback victory over No. 4 Michigan, the Alabama softball team reeled off its 11th straight win with a 11-3 victory over Nebraska in six innings.

Alabama stretched a 1-0 lead to 3-0 with a two-out, two-run homer in the second inning and after the Huskers had pulled within 5-3 with a two-run fourth inning, the Crimson Tide responded with a two-out, three-run homer in the bottom of the frame to put the game away. The Tide tacked on three runs over the final two innings to close out the win in six innings.

After scoring eight runs in its final inning against No. 4 Michigan, Alabama continued its hot hitting while scoring three runs in the first two innings. In the bottom of the first, Kayla Braud led off with a perfectly-placed bunt single and stole second on the next pitch. She came home with the game's first run on a one-out RBI single from All-American Charlotte Morgan. Then in the second, Jennifer Fenton lifted a two-out, two-run home run to left center to give the Tide a 3-0 lead.

The Huskers cut into the lead with a run in the top of the third. Heidi Foland reached on a one-out double and scored on a two-out, RBI single from Ashley Guile.

The Tide answered back with two more runs in the bottom of the frame. Alabama had only one hit in the inning, but it was a two-run triple off the bat of Jazlyn Lunceford after Hagemann had walked back-to-back hitters to score Whitney Larsen and pinch-runner Lisa Elizondo.

Trailing 5-1, Nebraska scored twice in the top of the fourth to pull within a 5-3 margin, but that is as close as the Huskers would come as the Tide tacked on six more runs to earn the run-rule victory.

But once again Alabama answered with another home run. This time it was Morgan doing the damage, as she belted a two-out, 2-2 pitch to right for a three-run homer to increase the lead to 8-3.

The Tide made it 9-3 in the fifth with a one-out solo home run from Locke.

A two-out RBI single and a passed ball accounted for the final two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning.

Alabama will conclude its stay at the Leadoff Classic with a single contest on Sunday. The Tide will face the UCF Knights at 12:30 p.m. ET at the South Commons Softball Complex.

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