TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Junior pitcher Meagan Prince stepped into the circle with two on and two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning, getting out of the jam with a grounder to second base to close the game as the No. 11 Kentucky softball team picked up a critical road win at No. 4 Alabama on Friday night to open this weekend's three-game set.
Senior pitcher Kelsey Nunley earned her team-high 18th win of the season to move to 18-4 on the year, going 6.2 innings, allowing just five Alabama hits, two earned runs and striking out seven batters in the game. Nunley pitched every pitch of the game until there were two outs in the seventh with runners on second and third after a walk and an infield single plus an error put runners on second and third. Prince walked Haylie McCleney before getting Chandler Dare to ground out to Katie Reed at second base to end the game.
With the win, Kentucky stays tied for third in the Southeastern Conference in the standings, and now boasts a 14-5 SEC record. Alabama falls to 10-6 on the season in league action and sits 39-9 overall - the same overall record as UK.
The win over No. 4 Alabama is Kentucky's third in the last four tries at Alabama's Rhoades Stadium, on the heels of taking two of three from the Crimson Tide last time UK visited Tuscaloosa in 2013. The top-5 win in Kentucky's second of the season, after beating No. 4 Oregon in the Kajikawa Classic, 8-6 back in February.
Saturday's second game of the series will start at 6 p.m. ET and televised by the SEC Network with Jenn Hildreth and Kayla Braud on the call. Sunday's series closer will start at 2:30 p.m. ET. Both games will also be available to fans on ESPN3 and the WatchESPN app.