Alabama Secures Weekend Series, Defeats Mississippi State 8-2 Saturday
A trio of home runs and a solid performance in the circle helped lift Alabama softball to an 8-2 win over Mississippi State Saturday, clinching the weekend series for the Crimson Tide.
Alabama (36-1, 7-1 SEC) trailed early after Mississippi State (21-12, 1-7 SEC) plated a run in the top of the first, but a pair of home runs in the bottom half put the Tide ahead 4-1 and never trailed from that point on. The first of those home runs came from junior Bailey Hemphill, part of a 2-for-4 day with two RBIs. Sophomore KB Sides scored a pair of runs in the win, going 2-for-4 with an RBI. Senior Courtney Gettins (5-0) was locked in from the circle Saturday, allowing just two runs, one earned, over 7.0 innings pitched with four strikeouts.
Mississippi State threatened immediately, loading the bases with one out in the top of the first following a fielding error. A base hit up the middle scored one run before a double play ended the inning and got the Tide out of the jam, trailing 1-0. With one out in the home half of the first, Sides knocked a single into center field and Hemphill followed with a towering home run over the camera platform in center field to put Alabama ahead 2-1. After a walk, the Bulldogs made the early call to their bullpen. A strikeout put out number two on the board but senior Regan Dykes followed that with another two-run home run, knocking off the scoreboard as the lead increased to 4-1.
Mississippi State got another run back with an RBI single in the top of the second but Alabama quickly took back the three-run lead, scoring on a wild pitch in the bottom half to make it 5-2. Still 5-2 in the bottom of the fourth, sophomore Maddie Morgan drew a leadoff walk and freshman pinch-runner Kloyee Anderson stole second and third base before coming home on an RBI single from Sides. An errant throw on the play allowed Sides to move all the way to third base and then came home on a wild pitch, stretching the lead to 7-2.
Morgan made it an 8-2 game with a solo home run leading off the bottom of the sixth. Mississippi State got its first two batters on base in the top of the seventh, but Gettins and the Tide defense retired the next three straight to end the game and clinch the weekend series.
The series finale match is set for a 1:30 p.m. CT start on Sunday, March 31.
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