clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Alabama Softball Goes To Italy

The post-Montana Fouts era begins for Patrick Murphy and Team28.

Jenna and Lauren Johnson.

Crimson Tide Team28 left for a summer tour of Italy on Monday July 17. The 10-day trip is a chance for the team to bond with some of the new teammates and to play a pair of doubleheaders against Team Italy on July 19 and 20. [And maybe while there, Coach Patrick Murphy can find a slugger or two who wants to attend college in America? I can dream, can’t I?]

The trip was preceded by a week of practice with three new additions participating. Juco transfer UTIL Kendal Clark, freshmen P Jocelyn Briski and OF Lauren Johnson are the newbies on the team. It appears the recent incoming transfers will not be part of the trip - most likely because arrangements were made before they announced their intentions to transfer.

“The trip starts in Venice, a three-day stretch that includes a pair of doubleheaders against the Italian national team. From there, the Crimson Tide will travel through Ferrara, Bologna, Florence, Parma, Lake Como and Milan before returning home to Tuscaloosa.”

A few nuggets:

  • Italy’s national softball team is one of the top-ranked teams in Europe. They have won three of the last five European Championships. However, they have never medaled in the Olympics - nor has any European team. Italy finished 6th in the 2020 Games.
  • Rising senior Emma Broadfoot has been practicing at catcher. She was mainly patrolling first base this past season - her first campaign at the Capstone. [SIDE NOTE: I have seen Aubies say that they hate when Bama fans refer to U of A as “The Capstone”. So please use that term as often as possible when you have the misfortune to be around them.]
  • In the 1970s, we had the funk and R&B band The Brothers Johnson. In 2024, we’ll have The Sisters Johnson. Thanks to the Super-Senior decree of 2020, Jenna Johnson will get one more season and a chance to play with her kid sister Lauren (see main photo) for one year. Being four years apart in age, they have not had many chances to play on the same organized team together. Their father communicated to RBR that they were teammates “a couple of times with #FuryPlatinum,” which is a fastpitch travel organization based in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
  • Pinch-runner specialist M’Kay Gidley is back and part of the trek to Italia. She joined the team two years ago as a walk-on, mainly for her speed. Much like the football team does, she probably earned a summer scholarship due to the departure of another, making one temporarily available.
  • KJ Haney is still a part of the team. She missed this entire past season due to a leg injury.
  • It may be the post-Montana Fouts era in Tuscaloosa, but the Tide alumnus is still around. According to, Fouts and Ally Shipman will be traveling with the team as well. The assumption is that the program allotted 20 spots for the trip and added these two former team captains since two spots became available by the out-transfers of Jordan Stephens and Aubrey Barnhart. There is no mention as to whether they will play in the games.
  • Speaking of Shipman, she got formerly engaged to Arkansas State QB JT Shrout earlier this month. The two met when Shrout was playing football for Tennessee and Ship was catching for the Lady Vols. He transferred to Colorado where he was the Buffs starter in 2022 until Deion ran him out of town.
  • Stephens is still in the Transfer Portal but has not found a new school as of yet. On all her social media she refers to herself as an Alabama SB “Alum”, which if in reference to academics is quite a feat for someone who has been on campus two years. More likely it means she has moved on from the UA program. Stephens spent this past week playing in the Florida Gulf Coast League.
  • Alabama softball has taken previous international trips to the Netherlands in 2014 and Japan in 2018.
  • In alumni news, Caroline Hardy is joining Stephanie VanBrakle-Prothro’s Memphis staff as the Tigers’ new assistant coach.

#RollTide #Team28