Softball Freshmen Roll in Run Rule Rout of ASU
The 4th ranked Alabama Crimson Tide softball team improved to 29-4 in an 8-0 run rule victory over the Alabama State Hornets on Tuesday in Rhoads Stadium. The Tide defense put together an impressive team effort as red shirt freshman Alex Salter earned her first career no hitter despite only having three strikeouts.
The Tide came out hot in the first inning. After Ally Shipman and Audrey Barnhart got on base, Abby Doerr batted Barnhart in. Jenna Lord then batted in Shipman and Doerr to give the Tide an early 3-0 lead.
Things really came unglued for Alabama State in the third inning when they pulled starting pitcher Elle Lunsford in favor of Ashley Pye. Pye faced nine batters. She walked three, allowed four hits, had four errors, and had two wild pitches that advanced batters, including one that allowed Kali Heivilin to score. By the end of the third inning, the Tide had extended its lead to 7-0.
Alabama head coach Patrick Murphy was very happy with the performance put forth by his entire freshman class in the win.
The Tide started every member of its freshman class and they all showed that they deserve to have the opportunity to compete. Barnhart earned the team 11 of its 15 outs starting at first base, Dallis Goodnight set the tone with a lead off hit and an aggressive attempt at stealing second base, and Megan Bloodworth went two-of-three with a key double and two runs batted in.
Freshman short stop Heivilin scored twice and had a key steal of second base to set Savannah Woodard up to bat her home to close out the game in the bottom of the 5th inning, and Lord had two RBIs in her three at bats.
The most notable freshman performance, however, was from Salter. Salter earned the first no hitter of her young career, and it was a complete game one at that.
“Salter’s off-speed was good, her drop ball was good,” said Murphy of her performance. “She let some put them in play and then we made the plays.”
Salter said she didn’t even realize she was pitching a no hitter until after the game when they were doing their team cheer.
“I’m speechless honestly,” she said after the game. “Just being a part of Alabama softball and being under the pitching staff is pretty great.”
Wednesday’s game against Jacksonville State is up in the air due to the threat of severe weather. If it is cancelled, the Tide will next face Georgia in a three game home series as they get back into SEC competition this weekend.
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