Alexis Osorio Ties NCAA Record with 21 Strikeouts in Seven-Inning Game, Alabama Softball Tallies Two Wins
After throwing a no-hitter yesterday, senior pitcher Alexis Osorio turned in another dominating performance for Alabama softball Saturday at the Easton Crimson Classic, tying an NCAA record for strikeouts in a seven-inning game with 21 in the 7-2 victory over Fordham, which followed a 6-3 win over Boston College.
“It’s not often that you get to be part of history,” UA head coach Patrick Murphy said. “Today was awesome. She’s been great for four years. She looked similar to last year’s opening game against Coastal Carolina where she threw a perfect game with 19 strikeouts. Fordham is a good hitting team. To do that against them after giving up the home run was even more impressive.”
Osorio (5-3) got into some early trouble in the game against Fordham (5-13), allowing two runs in the top of the first on a two-run home run. She was dominant from that point on, retiring 21 of the 26 batters she faced via strikeout. This breaks her previous Alabama (16-5) school record of 19 set in a perfect game on Feb. 10, 2017 at Coastal Carolina and ties the NCAA record for a seven-inning game, originally set by Cal’s Michele Granger on March 22, 1991 against Creighton. With today’s game, Osorio now owns five of the top seven single-game strikeout totals in program history.
Sophomore Bailey Hemphill led the Tide offense against the Rams, batting 3-for-3 with three RBIs, including a two-run home run. Freshman Kaylee Tow and sophomore Elissa Brown tallied two-hit performances, each scoring twice batting first and ninth, respectively.
Alabama fell behind early in the opening game to Boston College (8-12), trailing 3-0 before scoring six unanswered runs down the stretch to claim the 6-3 comeback victory. Tow tallied a season-high three hits in the leadoff spot, including her fifth home run of the season. Hemphill also knocked a long ball in the contest as part of a 2-for-4 day. Freshman Madison Preston (5-1) went the distance for the win in the circle, allowing three runs on five hits.
GAME ONE: ALABAMA 6, BOSTON COLLEGE 3
Boston College took an early lead in the top of the first after Cami Sellers pulled a three-run home run down the right-field line to jump ahead 3-0. Alabama led off the bottom-half of the inning with back-to-back singles but could not scratch a run across.
In the bottom of the second, junior Merris Schroder walked to lead off the inning and stole second in the next at-bat. On a fly ball to right field, an errant throw back to the infield allowed Schroder to advance to third and another errant throw later in the inning brought her home as an unearned run to cut the deficit to 3-1.
Alabama threatened again in the bottom of third, loading the bases with one out. Junior Reagan Dykes lifted a fly ball to right field and everyone tagged up and advanced 60 feet, making it a 3-2 game, but a strikeout ended the inning as the Tide could not tie the game.
Leading off the bottom of the fifth, Hemphill tied the game at 3-3 with a towering solo home run down the left-field line. Sophomore Gabby Callaway followed that with a double in the gap, which forced a pitching change for Boston College. A pair of walks would eventually load the bases with one out and senior Sydney Booker would pull a fly ball to left field, allowing senior pinch-runner Rachel Bobo to tag up and score on the sacrifice fly to give Alabama the 4-3 lead. Senior Demi Turner then knocked a single up the middle, scoring senior Peyton Grantham from second to increase the lead to 5-3.
Freshman Kaylee Tow made it a three-run game with a solo home run leading off the bottom of the sixth and Boston College re-entered its starting pitcher. Alabama took the 6-3 lead to the top of the seventh, and the Tide defense retired the side in order to secure the comeback victory.
GAME TWO: ALABAMA 7, FORDHAM 2
Fordham scored the first runs of the day in the top of the first on a two-run home run from Madi Shaw. Alabama cut the deficit in half in the bottom of the first on a sacrifice fly from Grantham. In the bottom of the second with Brown on base, Hemphill blasted a two-run home run to left field giving the Tide a 3-2 lead.
Freshman Maddie Morgan made it a 4-2 game with a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the fourth. Later in the inning with two out, Brown, Tow and Hemphill hit three-straight RBI singles to swell the lead to 7-2.
That score proved final as Osorio remained dominant in the circle, finishing the game with a school-record 21 strikeouts.
Alabama concludes its weekend at the Easton Crimson Classic on Sunday, March 11 against Samford at 1:30 p.m. CT.
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