RBR is growing! Again!
I'm proud to announce that SoGlad has joined the RBR staff to cover softball and will also help out with a wide variety of Crimson Tide sports.. SoGlad is a proud alumna of our fair university, a former member of the Million Dollar Band and RBR's official subject matter expert on all things Barrett Jones. So y'all give her a warm welcome and and of course a Roll Tide! - bammer
I assume that since you're here you've been following along, so I'll spare you a painful rehash of Monday and Tuesday. The bad news is that Bama is now 0-5 all time against the Gators in Oklahoma City. The good news is that it was a fantastic season, and there is plenty to be excited about.
Thank you, seniors!
First things first - this senior class was incredible. Three trips to the WCWS, the first title in program history, and their names all over the record books. Jackie Traina and Kaila Hunt will likely go down in history as all-time Alabama softball greats, but all five seniors are deserving of recognition.
Fitchner was a superstar at UT-San Antonio, but wanted to try playing on a slightly bigger stage. After transferring to UA and walking on the team, she won the starting catching position. Molly will stay at the Capstone for a master's degree in sports management.
Kaila's 58th career home run was a bright spot Tuesday night, good for a share of the #2 spot on the UA home run leaders list. A finalist for the Senior Class award, Kaila will return to school in the fall to finish her degree in secondary education (math).
Ryan Iamurri has been the bunt specialist and one of the emotional leaders for Alabama softball. She also served as a Student Athletic Advisory Committee liason on campus. Oh, and she played the last three months of her career with a torn ACL and PCL.
Jordan Patterson was around a lot of championship teams growing up, and got to be part of her own as a sophomore. Though not an every day player, Patterson was the ideal student-athlete, and through her career we never heard a bad thing about her. Jordan will stay in Tuscaloosa in the fall as a law student.
What's left to say here? The woman. The legend. The J-Train.
Thank you for your years in crimson, ladies, and best of luck in your upcoming pursuits!
But really - what happened?
Honestly? Florida was hot. In the postseason, they outscored opponents by a final margin of 81-10. The bats were big and the pitching was lights out. It was a concern going in to the series, and both sides became issues - the offense got the better of the Bama pitching staff and the Bama offense couldn't bring runners in, a problem which persisted throughout the WCWS for the Tide.
The issues with leaving runners on base were frustrating, to be sure, but I don't expect them to continue. Fortunately, you don't face pitchers like Hannah Rogers every day. In addition, the Tide will have all summer to work on being more aggressive at the plate,.
All good things, y'all. Alabama softball is a program with a decent shot of ending the season in Oklahoma City every year, and next year should be no exception. Of players with more than 100 at bats (about the cut off on every day batters), Haylie McCleney, Jadyn Spencer, and Kallie Case had three of the highest batting averages on the team.
Though used sparingly, Sydney Littlejohn's ERA of 1.49 speaks of good things to come, and Leslie Jury has been solid in relief efforts. Outside the circle, the face of the defense won't change too much and should be able to continue to perform well.