Feb. 21, 2013
BIRMINGHAM, Ala.-- The UAB softball team returns to the road on Friday, to face Alabama State in its first true doubleheader of the 2013 season. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m. CT.
UAB Softball Downs Alabama State 6-0 In Magic City Classic Finale
UAB softball's bats were hot Sunday afternoon as the Blazers tallied 11 hits en route to a 6-0 win over Alabama State in their Magic City Classic finale at UAB Softball Field. Shortstop Kayla Orr was named MVP Player of the tournament after hitting .500 with six hits, three runs and six RBI. Center fielder Caley Walden was tabbed to the all-tournament team.
Last Time Out
After nine games on the road, UAB opened its home slate by hosting defending national champion Alabama. The Crimson Tide jumped out to a quick, 5-0 lead before pitcher Jackie Traina gave up three consecutive walks to load the bases for senior catcher Anna Kimbrell in the fourth inning. The Fort Mill, S.C., native hit a grand slam over left field to cut the lead to one.
The Blazers got runners on base three more times, but Alabama came out with the win, 8-4.
For the game, UAB recorded its second-highest attendance of 1,204 fans. The Blazers' biggest crowd (1,323) came during the 2010 season, also against Alabama. In fact, four of UAB's top-five crowds have been in contests against the SEC opponent.
Scouting Alabama State
Alabama State hosted the Hornet Invitational last week, and finished with a 1-4 record. The Hornets took two losses to Belmont (7-0, 10-0), and two more to UNC Greensboro (4-0) and Eastern Illinois (12-0). Alabama State won its first game of the season in the final game of the invitational, against Eastern Illinois, 5-0.
In the win, first baseman Bailey Patt led the Hornets with two RBI, while center fielder Meagan Dixon and catcher Aleesa Yanez each contributed an RBI.
UAB leads the all-time series, 4-0, over Alabama State. In the squads' last meeting, the Blazers took a 6-0 win over the Hornets on Feb. 27, 2011.
No Base Is Safe
On the season, UAB is 10-15 in stolen base attempts, and averages 1.67 attempts per game. Freshman shortstop Caitlin Attfield leads the team with a perfect five-for-five mark in stolen base attempts, while senior center fielder Whitney Fletcher is two-for-two. Chandler Orr, sophomore Hayley Davis, and freshman Kelly Britthave also successfully stolen base for the Blazers.
Lauren Webster has recorded a total of 34 strikeouts for third most in the league, and the career high 14 Ks she recorded in the win over IUPUI is the most in one game this season by a C-USA school.
With five successful stolen bases, Caitlin Attfield sits in a tie for third-most in the league.
Through nine games, the Blazers have posted a team batting average of .291, which is best in Conference USA. UAB also boasts a team slugging percentage of .432--second best in C-USA.
The Blazers lead the league in home runs with nine, and have an on-base percentage of .374, which is second in the conference behind Houston.
Winning in the Circle
In the circle for the first nine games, UAB also leads the league in team pitching with an ERA of 2.37. The Blazer pitching staff has combined for a conference-best 75 strikeouts, and also leads the league in batters struck out looking with 22.
Accolades For Blazers
After being named to the Paradise Classic All-Tournament Team, junior designated hitter Kristen McGrath and senior third baseman Kate Armstrong earned another set of honors in the season's opening week.
After blasting three home runs in Honolulu, McGrath was named Conference USA Hitter of the Week. Armstrong was named UAB Student-Athlete of the Week after hitting a home run of her own. The Vestavia Hills, Ala. native recorded 14 at bats and owns an on-base percentage of .438--the second highest on the squad.
Next up, the Blazers will travel to Kennesaw, Ga., for a twin bill at Kennesaw State on Tuesday, Feb. 26. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. ET.