April 8, 2006
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. --- The UAB softball team swept UCF Saturday in a doubleheader at George Ward Park. The Blazers rallied from behind to win game one, 2-1, in eight innings and shutout the Golden Knights in game two, 2-0. UAB improved to 23-16 overall and 9-5 in Conference USA. UCF fell to 13-28 on the season and 0-14 in conference action.
"It's always nice to take two wins away from a good UCF team," said UAB head coach Marla Townsend. "We found a way to come out on top in both games. It was good to see us have several extra base hits in both games today. UCF came out and played well today. They are very sound defensively and put the ball in play at the plate. We need to come out tomorrow and hit the ball because at this point in the year every game is big."
The Golden Knights jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the first inning of game one but the Blazers quickly tied the game in the bottom of the second. The final six innings were a pitcher's dual between UAB sophomore Jennifer Nelson and Allison Kime for UCF.
Both pitchers dominated after the first two innings, not allowing either team to rally. UAB capped off its come-from-behind victory in the bottom of the eighth inning. Junior Nicole Whitlock led off the inning with a double to center field. Sophomore Leigh Walker followed Whitlock with a single up the middle and advanced to second on the play. The Golden Knights walked freshman Kayla Harris to load the bases with one out. Whitlock scored the game-winning run on a wild pitch to end the game.
Nelson (10-7) became the Blazers first 10-game winner this season after pitching eight solid innings. Nelson struck out 14 batters and allowing a run on three hits. Kime took the loss after giving up both runs in 7.1 innings of work.
Junior Lindsay Stanley had two infield singles for UAB in game one. The Blazers had five different players collect hits including two by Walker.
In game two, UAB scored two runs in the second inning to win the game. Harris handled the pitching duties for the Blazers and shutout the Golden Knights to improve to 9-4. Harris only allowed two hits in seven innings while walking three. She was in control of the game, forcing UCF to go down in order in three of the final four innings.
Offensively, Harris led the way going 2-for-2 with an RBI. UAB collected seven hits in game two and only struck out twice.
The series finale will be held Sunday at 1 p.m. at George Ward Park. Complete coverage of the UAB athletics can be found at www.uabsports.com.