TUSCALOOSA, Ala.- After losing the first game of the day, Alabama defeated Middle Tennessee 1-0 in a winner-take-all game seven in the Tuscaloosa Regional.

“I did not want anybody to have to take a jersey off today,” Alabama Head Coach Patrick Murphy said.

Jaala Torrence got the start after already pitching a complete game on Friday and appearing in relief on Saturday. If Torrence was tired, she refused to show, it pitching her second complete game of the weekend and striking out eight Blue Raiders.

“I thought she threw a little harder today,” Middle Tennessee Head Coach Jeff Breeden said. “I think she mixed us up pretty well too. She was dominant today.”

Torrence finished the weekend with 18.1 innings pitched, 17 strikeouts and no runs allowed.

“I was telling myself that I’m going to do this for our team and our seniors,” Torrence said. “Each time I went out there I kept saying it and it kept me focused.”

Alabama’s offense had been nonexistent for most of the day after scoring 12 runs on Saturday. After only scoring one run in game six, the Crimson Tide had only three hits heading into the seventh inning when Ally Shipman stepped up to the plate. Shipman sent the first pitch she saw over the wall in left field to give the Tide their first lead of the day and Torrence was able to shut the door on the Blue Raiders.

“I really just wanted to do it for Jaala,” Shipman said. “I was just trying to get on base and do something for her because she did a great job.

Middle Tennessee forces a game seven

In the first game of the afternoon, the Blue Raiders struck first. With two outs in the top of the first inning, Anyce Harvey drove in Shelby Echols with a single to center field to take an early 1-0 lead. Then in the third inning, Laura Mealer hit her second home run of the weekend, this time a two-run shot to left field to put Middle Tennessee up by three.

The Tide cut into the lead in the bottom of the fourth inning when Shipman hit a sacrifice fly to center field and Larissa Preuitt was able to score to make it 3-1.

Middle Tennessee scored again in the sixth inning when Ansley Blevins singled to right field to score Lexi Madlock and go up 4-1 which would be the final score to force game seven.

“We stood toe to toe with the number five team in the country today,” Breeden said. “My kids played their rear end off.”

Before this regional Middle Tennessee had not won a game or scored a single run in regional play.


Up Next

Alabama is headed to the Super Regionals for the seventeenth time in program history.

They will host No. 12 seed Northwestern next weekend at Rhoads Stadium.