Alabama Softball fans continue to take the moniker "best softball fans in the nation" to heart setting two new attendance records in the midweek match up against rival Auburn earlier this week. The Crimson Tide set a new regular season NCAA single day attendance record with a combined doubleheader crowd of 6,259 fans packing Rhoads Stadium to watch the Tide take two from Auburn. Game two of the twin bill also set a new Alabama record for largest single game crowd at 3,256. Rhoads Stadium also owns national attendance records in both the NCAA Regional and Super Regional with only Women's College World Series sessions at ASA Hall of Fame Stadium surpassing Rhoads Stadium attendance marks.
Let's all hope the momentum of the mid-week sweep carries over to the weekend as Tuscaloosa welcomes top ranked Georgia for the first conference weekend series of the season. The Lady Dawgs bring a 23-1 (5-0) record with them, their only loss coming to Oklahoma State at the Cathedral Classic. Georgia returns 17 players from a team that finished 50-13 and made the final four at the 2010 Women's College World Series, so they are an experienced and talented bunch that will provide the Tide with it's toughest test yet. From the rolltide.com preview:
As a team, the Bulldogs are hitting .338 with 38 home runs and 151 RBI. In the circle, UGA is pitching at a 1.41 clip and have struck out 172 batters in 149 innings. Opponents are hitting just .181 and have been tagged for a 7.49 ERA.
Individually, Megan Wiggins leads the team with a .461 average, six home runs and 30 RBI. Alisa Goler set the Georgia career home run record as she belted two home runs in the doubleheader against South Carolina to move her total to 47. She enters the weekend with a .339 average, six home runs and 18 RBI. Brianna Hesson has also provided some punch as she sports a .339 average, six home runs and 26 RBI. In the circle, Alison Owen leads the team with a 0.75 ERA. She is 8-0 with 59 strikeouts in 46 2/3 innings. Newcomer Morgan Montemayor is 10-1 with a 1.63 ERA. The rookie has fanned 62 in 55 2/3 innings.
Once again, history is on our side as Alabama holds a 28-12 all-time series advantage over Georgia and is 14-5 against the Bulldogs at home, has never lost a home series to Georgia, and has only dropped two series against Georgia over all, the last coming in Athens in 2005.
Games one and three will be broadcast online via Tide TV and WVUA Radio, while game two (tomorrow night, 7:00pm CST) will be available on ESPNU. We'll get an open thread up for each game with links to coverage. Roll Tide.