Sunday win keeps undefeated season alive


Bryan Bergman

The Crimson Tide softball team continued its undefeated season Sunday with a 6-1 victory over the Winthrop Eagles. The win wraps up the Easton Bama Bash, during which the Tide went 5-0, extending its winning streak in the tournament to 42 games.

The team was helped to its victory by a strong performance from pitcher Lauren Sewell, now 3-0, who gave up only two hits and no earned runs while striking out five batters. Sewell and the team got off to a rocky start, giving up a base hit to the first batter, who scored when first baseman Jadyn Spencer misplayed a ground ball and let it get past her.

“You just have to forget about that first inning,” Sewell said. “That inning was over and I just knew that my defense had my back and offense had my back, and just tried staying calm throughout the rest of the game.”

Sewell settled down after that, giving up just one more hit and retiring the Winthrop side in order in four of her seven innings of work. Down by a run early, the Tide evened the score in the bottom of the first on a home run from Kaila Hunt. The home run was Hunt’s seventh of the season, a mark that leads the team.

After the first inning, both teams pitched four shutout innings. They remained locked in a 1-1 tie until the bottom of the sixth. Kayla Braud beat out an infield single, then advanced to second on a bunt by Haylie McCleney. After Kaila Hunt drew a walk, Spencer hit a line drive that dropped just beyond the glove of the diving center fielder, loading the bases for Danae Hays.

“They weren’t going to pitch to Hunt, and then it was up to Jadyn [Spencer] and Danae [Hays],” head coach Patrick Murphy said. “I think for Danae that’s probably the most pressure she’s been up against, bases loaded, 1-1 game and she got something to drop.”

Hays’ single scored Braud and Hunt, breaking the tie to give the Tide a 3-1 lead, with Danielle Richard coming up to bat.

“That pitcher was getting me a little bit on her screwball,” Richard said. “So before I even got to that at bat, I decided I was going to make an adjustment in the box, and I’m going to crush this pitch.”

She hit a three-run home run, her first of the season, to give the Tide a 6-1 lead. Winthrop failed to score in the top of the seventh, cementing Alabama’s 16th win of the season.

The Tide will next be in action against Samford at 6 p.m. on Feb. 27.