Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Alabama struggled in road win against UAB

The No. 1 Alabama softball team beat the 6-4 UAB Blazers 8-4 on the road to advance to 11-0 on the season Tuesday.

Despite the win, the Tide struggled over its in-state rivals.

Alabama opened up the game in its usual dominant fashion, as Jackie Traina got the team on the board early with a 3-run homer, scoring senior Kayla Braud and freshman Haylie McCleney.

The Tide’s defense was just as dominant, only giving up a single hit in the first inning, and holding the Blazers scoreless through three innings.

Alabama stalled offensively in the second inning, but managed to lengthen their lead by two in the third, when UAB starter Leigh Streetman walked Molly Ficthner with the bases loaded, scoring Kaila Hunt. A passed ball brought in another score, giving Alabama the 5-0 lead.

Heading into the bottom of the fourth, Traina started the inning with three consecutive walks to load the bases. UAB center Anna Kimbrell then scored a four-run homer to cut the Tide’s lead to 5-4 with no outs.

Alabama head coach Patrick Murphy said the grand slam was simply off a missed pitch.

“It was a fatty,” Murphy said. “You don’t walk three in a row and then throw a fatty in there. They capitalized on it. She definitely learned from that, I hope.”

The team managed to escape the inning without any more damage, but the Blazers had found new life. Shortstop Kaila Hunt was able to squash a potential second wind from the Blazers, however, when she earned a single homer on the first pitch of the fifth inning.

With the homer, the Tide’s second of the game, UAB lost all its energy, and failed to threaten for the rest of the game. Alabama was able to add another two runs in the top of the seventh to cushion its lead, sealing the 8-4 lead.

Even with her huge home run, Hunt said she approached it the same as all the other pitches she faced.

“It wasn’t much different than my other bats that I go up,” Hunt said. “I try to be aggressive. I try to look for a certain pitch when I go up there. I try to have a plan. And it just so happens, she threw a ball over the plate.”

Braud, McCleney and Hunt all scored two runs apiece. Braud went 1-3 at the plate, while McCleney and Hunt went 3-4 and 2-3, respectively.

Despite his team’s success at the top of the lineup, Murphy said his team could improve in every facet of the game. Pitching was one of the areas he mentioned. Even so, Traina pitched the entire game, gave up five hits and four runs, all earned, and got nine strikeouts.

“It was a tough night to play, definitely to pitch in,” Murphy said. “But [Traina] had enough to get us through. And that’s usually her trademark. She gets the outs when she needs them.”

Traina said she felt she performed well despite not playing her best game. She said she’ll be looking to improve and eliminate the mistakes that put her team in that position.

“Obviously, I know I could get better,” Traina said. “There’s things I have to work on. It wasn’t a perfect game, but I had my teammates behind me, so I don’t have to worry too much.”

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