Patrick Murphy came into Friday night with 999 victories as Alabama softball’s head coach.
Alexis Osorio made sure there was no way the Crimson Tide could lose. Gabby Callaway saw to it that he got the milestone victory.
Osorio, a senior right-hander, threw a no-hitter and Callaway, an outfielder, blasted a three-run home run to lead Alabama to a 5-0 victory over Boston College on a chilly night at Rhoads Stadium.
Murphy became the only softball coach in SEC history to notch 1,000 victories at a league school. By night’s end, Murphy had added another win, 4-3 over Fordham.
Murphy was an assistant when the program started in 1997. He was promoted two seasons later and is now in his 20th year as head coach.
The coach’s mother, Jean, was on hand to witness it, but not because he was approaching the big number. She lives in Iowa.
“It’s a lot warmer here,” she said.
On the way to the park they drove by Sokol Park, where Alabama played its first home game.
“It’s hard to believe we played at that corner field,” Murphy said, “and then to come here with one of the nicest facilities in the country. We probably averaged 50 fans a game the first two or three years.”
Paid attendance on Friday night was 2,501.
“When we moved in here it made all the difference in the world to the program,” the coach said.
The Easton Crimson Classic will resume today, with Alabama (14-5) playing Boston College at 11 a.m. and Fordham at 1 p.m. Start times were moved up due to expected weather.
Osorio (4-3) struck out 11 batters – seven of them looking – with one walk as she breezed through the Boston College lineup. The Eagles (7-11) had upset a ranked Ole Miss team during the week.
It was an outing the two-time All-American from Riverside, California, needed after getting roughed up in two starts last weekend at a tournament in Seattle.
“I did have a rough weekend,” Osorio said. “I think pretty much everything was working (Friday). My main goal was to stay relaxed and composed and just really focus on spinning the ball.”
Callaway added a double to her third-inning home run to finish 2-for-2. Merris Schroder added two hits.
Murphy’s 1,001st victory wasn’t as clean or pretty. UA committed two errors and stranded eight runners but held on to defeat Fordham (5-12). None of the the Rams’ runs were earned.
Third baseman Maddie Morgan went 2-for-3 with two RBIs. Shortstop Sydney Booker and outfielder Kaylee Tow added two hits each. Catcher Reagan Dykes hit a solo home run.
Courtney Gettins (6-1) allowed four hits in 4 1/3 innings with four walks and three strikeouts for the win. Freshman lefty Madison Preston pithed 2 2/3 innings of shutout ball for the save.
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