The No. 3 National Seed Alabama Crimson Tide fought until the last out to earn the 4-3 win over Kentucky in the Super Regional-opening game on Friday afternoon.
It was a win that was definitely earned, as the Tide had to fight back after Kentucky struck first on an RBI single in the 3rd inning, and again in the 4th inning on a solo home run to trail 2-0. Then, once the Tide grabbed the lead, had to hold off a Wildcat comeback on a solo home run in the 7th inning
Starting pitcher Montana Fouts showed signs of frustration, but that small piece of adversity would be enough to light a fire into the junior ace, as well as her teammates.
Fouts went on to strike out five batters after going down 2-0, and the offense scored four runs in the bottom of the 4th inning to give Alabama the win. Renee Abernathy, the Kentucky batter who hit a solo home run in the 4th inning, hit a solo home run in the 7th inning to give Kentucky some hope, but Fouts went on to strike out the final batter of the inning, giving Alabama the win.
Fouts did not let the early woes get to her, as she went on to strike out 11 batters in a complete-game performance.
Friday’s outcome fueled Saturday’s fire for Alabama, as they quickly jumped on Kentucky and did not look back.
Playing as the visiting team in game two of the super regional, Alabama struck first on a 2-RBI double by Kaylee Tow with zero outs in the first inning gave the Crimson Tide the early lead. Kentucky answered by recording a run via the fielder’s choice in the 2nd inning to cut the lead to 2-1.
The nail in the coffin came off the bat of Maddie Morgan when she hit a 2-run home run in the 4th inning to give Alabama the 4-1 lead, and ultimately the win.
Lexi Kilfoyl led the way in the circle by striking out seven and walking one batter in seven innings. Kaylee Tow and Elissa Brown had two hits for Alabama.
Alabama Softball will now head to their first Women’s College World Series of the decade, and their 13th overall. Before the COVID pandemic cut last season short, Alabama’s six of their 13 trips came in the 2010s, which saw a National Championship in 2012. Their 2019 trip was their first since 2016, which was the tail-end of a three-year run to Oklahoma City.
Alabama will open its run towards a Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City, OK on Thursday, June 3 against Arizona. The first pitch time has yet to be determined.