By (Ehsan Kassim)

Ninth-ranked Alabama blew an opportunity to tie or even take the lead in the final inning of its first loss of the season against No. 11 Baylor. The 2-1 loss concluded the Black and Gold Invitational.

Alabama (6-1) fell behind Baylor (7-0) early on and never led in the game. The Bears scored both of their runs in the first inning of Alabama starter Alexis Osorio (2-1).

Osorio pitched six innings, allowing two earned runs on five hits. She struck out five and also walked five.

Baylor starter Gia Rodini (3-0) held Alabama hitless until the third inning when freshman Kaylee Tow hit a solo home run to cut the Bears lead to 2-1. Tow also walked in the game.

Rodini limited Alabama to just six baserunners (4 hits, 2 walks) and just one run. She struck out eight Crimson Tide hitters.

Junior Caroline Hardy got a one-out single for Alabama in the seventh and senior pinch runner Rachel Bobo reached third base on a single by sophomore Claire Jenkins. Jenkins advanced to second on the throw.

Despite having runners in scoring position and a chance to tie or take the lead, a strikeout and popout ended Alabama’s rally and the game, with the Bears clinging to a 2-1 victory.

Alabama will make its home debut next weekend, hosting the the Easton Bama Bash Feb. 23-25 at Rhoads Stadium. The Crimson Tide will play five games over the three days, hosting Georgia State, Northern Iowa and No. 8/6 Florida State.

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Source:: The Crimson White Sports