by: Alex Chasen
TUSCALOOSA Ala. – (#12) Arkansas Razorbacks ace pitcher Chenise Delce came out victorious in her one on one 10-inning battle against (#13) Alabama Crimson Tide’s ace pitcher Montana Fouts.
Delce held the Tide to five hits (three of those coming in the bottom of the 10th inning) and just one earned run, for a final score of 2-1. The Razorbacks head home to Fayetteville, Arkansas with an improved record of 22-8 (3-3 SEC) while Alabama falls to 22-8 (1-2 SEC).
Alabama’s one and only run came in the bottom of the second inning when Junior first baseman Emma Broadfoot hit her second home run of the season, the solo shot gave the Tide a 1-0 lead.
The bats stalled and once again Alabama had an opportunity to take the lead multiple times, having the bases loaded late in the game with a chance to get a walk-off win, but they repeated Sunday’s events and could not get the job done in the series finale.
Associate Head Coach Alyson Habetz discussed what needs to happen for the team to come through with a clutch hit in these late-game situations.
“The people who are up in those situations haven’t had as many opportunities, in the last inning we get three hits by our vets (Prange, Shipman and Dowling)…and then there is someone with not as much experience like Emma, but the more they’re in those clutch situations, even when they don’t come through they feel that pressure and that anxiety and it’s going to help them down the road,” Habetz said.
Out of the gate, Arkansas hitters displayed poise and patience at the plate against Fouts, walking leadoff hitter Reagan Johnson. The composure at the plate continued throughout the entire game which ultimately aided in their win. Fouts got into many full counts, giving up seven hits, one home run and two doubles on 173 pitches.
Habetz on how does Fouts not get frustrated when she throws for that many pitches and doesn’t get run support.
“Montana is a bulldog,…she knows they’re trying, she knows they want it, they want it for her. It’s unfortunate it hasn’t happened yet but it’s going to because she’s a great teammate and they want to fight for her,” Habetz said.
Wednesday at 6 p.m. CT the Crimson Tide look to bounce back against their in-state rival the 13-15 UAB (The University of Alabama at Birmingham) Blazers in their last of four home games before heading on the road for six games against conference opponents, (#4) Tennessee and Missouri.