Costly mistakes and not being able to match Tennessee’s power at the plate led to the Crimson Tide dropping their opening game of the Women’s College World Series, 10-5.
With Alabama ace Montana Fouts still battling a hyper-extended knee that occurred back in the SEC Tournament quarterfinals, junior Jaala Torrence got the start in the circle.
The Lady Volunteers took advantage of Fouts’ absence all game long, beginning with four runs in the second inning off two different two-run RBI doubles from Katie Taylor and Zaida Puni.
Tennessee had themselves a historic game, scoring their most runs in program history in a WCWS game. It took them just four innings to earn the record, scoring 10 runs.
After Torrence and Alex Salter allowed a combined 10 runs to cross the plate, it took the Tide’s third pitcher of the day – Lauren Esman – to finally shut down Tennessee for the final two innings.
Heading into the fifth inning, Alabama trailed 10-2. Looking to keep the game alive, freshman Kenleigh Cahalan blasted a two-run RBI double over the head of left fielder Rylie West to cut into their deficit and force a sixth inning.
Alabama freshman Marlie Giles hit a solo shot down the left field line in the top of the sixth inning before going down in order in the seventh to put an end to the ball game.
Alabama had many chances to slow down Tennessee, but they allowed six total runs with two outs in the inning, plus three costly fielding errors by third baseman Ashley Prange. These mistakes allowed the Lady Volunteers to take over the game.
With the Lady Volunteers’ win this afternoon they move on to the next round to face the winner of No.1 Oklahoma versus No. 9 Stanford on Saturday at 2 p.m. CT.
The Tide will look to keep their season alive in the double elimination WCWS Friday at 6 p.m. CT. They will face off against the loser of No.1 Oklahoma versus No. 9 Stanford.
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