Alabama Softball Gears Up for the Easton Bama Bash
After a successful start to the home portion of the schedule against Troy, the Alabama Crimson Tide Is getting ready to host a big weekend tournament against some of college softball’s finest teams.
The Crimson Tide will host #15 Arizona, #14 Tennessee and Marshall as part of the Easton Bama Bash.
Alabama took care of the Troy Trojans 8-0 in five innings Wednesday night in the home opener to increase their winning streak to 10 games.
The 8-0 score was a little deceiving because Troy hung around with Alabama for the first three innings before the Crimson Tide flexed their muscle with a seven-run frame in the bottom of the fourth inning.
Sydney Littlejohn got the start in the circle against the Trojans. Coming off back-to-back shut out efforts against Maryland and Georgia State, the junior right hander pitched her best game of the season in a five-inning complete game performance. Littlejohn allowed just four hits and did not walk a batter while striking out seven Troy batters.
A thorough team effort from the plate complimented Littlejohn in the circle. Every batter in the lineup posted at least one hit or drove in at least one run. Peyton Grantham and Mari Cranek each homered in the seven-run 4th inning for Alabama. During the rally, senior Haylie McCleney swiped her 100th career stolen base in a crimson and white uniform. She is only the sixth player in school history to reach the 100 stolen base mark for a career.
Alabama will have their hands full with a tough trio of teams coming into Tuscaloosa for the weekend. Arizona, Tennessee and Marshall combined for a 123-52 record last season and are off to a 22-7 start between the three teams.
This weekend’s Easton Bama Bash could provide fans with an excellent display of pitching from all four teams in the field. Every team has a team ERA below 3.00. Highlighting the field pitching wise is Tennessee senior hurler Erin Gabriel. The Poland, Ohio, native struck out 13 batters in a complete game season opening victory against Creighton.
One other player to note is Marshall’s Morgan Zerkle. Zerkle led the country with 47 stolen bases and established a new single season record in Conference USA with a .507 batting average last season. The junior outfielder is already off to a 17-27 start from the plate this season.
Alabama begins the Easton Bama Bash Friday at 6 PM against Arizona.
College Softball Notes Around Alabama:
-South Alabama fell out of the USA Today/NFCA Top 25 Coaches Poll with losses to #23 Mississippi State, Samford and SIUE
-UAB will face their 7th ranked opponent this season against #13 Florida State during this weekend’s Unconquered Invitational in Tallahassee, Florida.
-Samford opens their 2016 home schedule with Tennessee Tech and Wright State this weekend as part of the Samford Invitational.