WOMEN’S COLLEGE WORLD SERIES
Alabama vs. Oklahoma
When: 2:30 p.m. Sunday
Where: USA Hall of Fame Stadium, Oklahoma City
TV: ESPN
Radio: 93.3 FM


OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – It was a long day for Alabama softball.

It was a long night, too.

But the Crimson Tide isn’t complaining. They are still playing in the Women’s College World Series and having to spend more than 12 hours at USA Softball Stadium to do it is just fine with them.

Alabama shut out Arizona 2-0 in an elimination game that finished at 12:46 a.m. Sunday morning, setting up a rematch of the WCWS opener against top-seed Oklahoma. OU beat Alabama 3-2 in the first game. First pitch for Sunday’s game is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. on ESPN.

“We had 16 of the 19 (UA players) that never played here,” Alabama coach Patrick Murphy said of the WCWS opener with Oklahoma. “That’s a lot for the first time out playing the No 1 team in basically their home facility. We are hoping to play really well and allow the senior to keep wearing the jersey.”

Alabama (59-9) started the day playing Florida in a game scheduled for 1:30 p.m., but a three-hour weather delay pushed the game back to late afternoon. Alabama routed the Gators 15-3.

After a small break, the Crimson Tide was back on the field for its game with Arizona, which started at 10:35 p.m.

“I think everyone had adrenaline from the first game,” Murphy said. “That was one of the best games Montana (Fouts) has pitched all year. You know, ‘Murder’s Row’ (for Arizona is (Jessie) Harper, (Malia) Martinez and Dejah (Mulipola) and she struck them out in order the first time she saw them.”

Fouts, the SEC Freshman of the Year, played like a seasoned veteran against the Wildcats (48-14). She pitched a complete-game three-hitter with nine strikeouts and three walks. The ‘Murder’s Row’ for Arizona (66 combined home runs) went 1-for-8 against Fouts with five strikeouts.

Fouts got into trouble twice and the defense got her out of it both times. In the fourth inning Arizona loaded the bases with one out. Fouts got a strikeout for the second out and first baseman Bailey Hemphill saved two runs by snagging a line drive to get the Crimson Tide out of the inning unscathed.

“I don’t know why, but I had a gut feeling (Arizona’s Hannah Bowen) was going to hit it in the 3-4 hole so I cheated a little bit that way,” Hemphill said. “Montana placed (the pitch) right I guess and I was able to get to it.”

Hemphill accounted for the only runs of the game with a two-out, two-run double to left-center field in the third inning to give Fouts all the run support she needed.

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