April 20, 2012
ATHENS, Ga. - The second ranked Alabama softball team powered its way to a convincing 8-3 win to even the series against No. 13 Georgia, Friday night at Jack Turner Stadium. With the win the Crimson Tide improve to 41-4 overall and 18-3 in Southeastern Conference play. Georgia falls to 35-11 on the season and moves to 13-8 in league action.
After Georgia took a 3-2 lead in the second inning, Alabama scored six unanswered runs on the strength of 12 hits, including three home runs to even the series. Senior Amanda Locke paced the Tide with a perfect 3-for-3 night, needing just a single to bat for the cycle.
Sophomore pitcher Jackie Traina was hit early but shut the door in the later innings as she allowed three runs on five hits while striking out five. The right-hander only allowed one hit after the second inning.
Alabama opened the game with two, two-out runs in the first inning. Sophomore Kaila Hunt belted a liner off Georgia pitcher Morgan Montemayor to score senior Jennifer Fenton from third. Locke then followed it up with her first career triple, scoring Hunt all the way from first.
Georgia answered in the bottom half though as the Bulldogs hit two solo home runs. Tess Sito hit a home run over the wall in left-center and then Paige Wilson hit a liner over the wall in right-center to even the score.
UGA pushed across a single run in the second to take a 3-2 lead. Anna Swofford scored on an Ashley Pauly bloop single to left.
Alabama retook the lead when it scored two runs in the fourth - a lead it would not relinquish. Junior Courtney Conley provided the big hit with a two-run single through the left side that scored senior Jazlyn Lunceford and freshman Danae Hays.
Junior Jackey Branham kept the momentum going as she hit a leadoff home run on a 3-2 count to start off the fifth and expand the Tide lead to 5-3.
Lunceford continued the power surge for Alabama as she crushed the first pitch she saw over the wall in left for a two-run home run to plate Locke and move the lead to 7-3.
Locke then drilled the third home run on the night for the Tide as she smacked a 3-2 pitch over the scoreboard in left to give Alabama an 8-3 lead in the sixth.
Alabama will close out the series against Georgia on Saturday with first pitch scheduled for 1:30 p.m. CT, at Jack Turner Stadium.