By Justin Smith
Special to The Tuscaloosa News
Alabama softball bounced back from back-to-back losses with a 5-1 win against Georgia State on Wednesday at Rhoads Stadium.
Krystal Goodman allowed just one run on two hits and walked one in the complete-game victory. It was her seventh win of the season and she remains undefeated. Goodman said she felt the Alabama offense was more aggressive in Wednesday’s game than in the two previous losses to South Carolina last weekend.
“We were a lot more determined to put runs on the board,” Goodman said. “We did not do that as well against South Carolina. Tonight we did.”
Determined is an understatement. The Tide (39-4) went through the entire batting order in the first inning. A Claire Jenkins’ RBI single got the scoring started. Freshman Skylar Wallace extended the Alabama lead with a two-run single to put Alabama up 3-0.
Kaylee Tow scored the last run in the explosive first inning to give the Tide the 4-0 lead.
The Panthers remained scoreless through two innings and the Tide capitalized off defensive mistakes in the second. Elissa Brown scored her second run of the game of a Georgia State error. Brown went 2-for-3 with one stolen base.
“I have been keeping everything short,” Brown said. “I have been keeping my hands on the bat and making sure I am popping the ball and making sure I put it where I want it to be.”
Both teams went scoreless in the third, but thanks to some sloppy play by Alabama, the Panthers got on the board in the fourth on a Tide error.
Right fielder KB Sides left the game in the fourth inning with an injury after colliding with Wallace for a fly ball. Alabama head coach Patrick Murphy said he wasn’t sure of the extent of the injury.
Alabama scored the final run in the fifth and Brown was once again involved. Her single scored Wallace for the 5-1 advantage.
The Tide will jump back into SEC play Saturday when they take on the Georgia Bulldogs at 11 a.m. at Rhoads Stadium in the first of a thee-game weekend series. Murphy said taking care of business at home will be valuable to his team going forward.
“We really need to take care of our home turf for the rest of the year,” Murphy said. “That is our emphasis right now, take care of the Rhoads House.”