By (Kelly Ward)

For the sixth straight year, Alabama softball opened its season with a win. After downing Fordham 9-1 in five innings, No. 5 Alabama dropped its next game, a 8-1 decision to No. 17 UCF in the UCF Classic.

In the first game, left-hander Madi Moore (1-0) made her first collegiate start. She had one unearned run after allowing four hits and striking out two. She walked two as well in five innings pitched.

Senior centerfielder Haylie McCleney went 3-for-3 in the first game, one of three who had multiple hits in the mercy-rule win. Sophomore infielder Demi Turner and senior infielder Leona Lafaele had two hits apiece.

Redshirt sophomore Peyton Grantham went 0-for-3 in her first game back after a season-ending leg injury in the fall of 2014.

Alabama couldn’t get its bats going in the second game. The Crimson Tide had three hits and three errors in the 8-1 loss.

Junior right-hander Sydney Littlejohn (0-1) pitched six innings in the loss. She gave up 11 hits and six earned runs. Littlejohn walked two and struck out three.

Lafaele went 1-for-3 at the plate and recorded the team’s only RBI with a double to score Marisa Runyon in the sixth inning.

Alabama (1-1) will face off with Rutgers (0-2) at 11 a.m. CT and No. 19 James Madison (2-0) at 3:30 p.m. CT on Saturday.

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Source:: The Crimson White Sports