By Justin Smith
Special to TideSports
Alabama softball’s Elissa Brown bounced back from a slow start to her junior season with some huge performances in the Easton Bama Bash.
Brown caught many people’s attention when she hit the game-winning RBI in the Tide’s, 1-0, win over Minnesota, but the Eclectic native made sure her walk-off hit was not going to be the only thing that caught people’s eyes during the Tide’s home debut.
Her home run stealing catch against Missouri State made Saturday’s ESPN SportCenter Top 10, and she later tied Alabama softball’s single-game stolen base record with four against the Bears. She led Alabama with a batting average of .500 during the weekend series, which is something she said she feels is a was a credit to her attitude heading into the weekend.
“I went into this weekend with an open mindset,” Brown said. “I wanted to keep things simple because I was not really producing as much in the past two weekends. I really just went in trusting myself and my teammates, with it being the first game at home.”
Alabama head coach Patrick Murphy has put an emphasis on the Tide stealing as many bases as possible this season and said he felt Brown and her speed would be a huge part of that mission before the season started. Brown stole a total of six bases during the Bama Bash. Murphy’s trust in Brown encouraged her to take every opportunity to steal a base.
“It was really just trusting I could get there,” Brown said. “He (Murphy) trusted in me by giving me the steal every time. I know we talked about it a lot, and the girls are always supporting me by counting down how many I got.”
The Crimson Tide improved their record to 16-0 after it shut out the UAB Blazers, 8-0, in Birmingham on Wednesday. Brown had one RBI on two at-bats.
Junior pitcher Sarah Cornell pitched the entire game for the Tide and had five strikeouts. Bailey Hemphill and Skylar Wallace both hit home runs during the matchup.
Brown is one of the five players from the state of Alabama on Alabama’s 2019 roster. They all have had the opportunity to play within the state of Alabama multiple times during their early season. This is the second time Alabama has played an away game within the state of Alabama, which is something Murphy has strived to do to the benefit of Alabama fans across the state.
“Almost every year we go somewhere, it is sold out,” Murphy said. “I know will have a bunch of people coming up to the game.”
Alabama will be back in action on Friday as it will host the Easton Crimson Classic this weekend at Rhoads Stadium. The Tide will take on Michigan State, Southern Miss and Saint Francis throughout the series. Michigan State will be the first team to matchup against Alabama on Friday at 4 p.m.