CULLMAN, Ala. - Alabama won its final midweek non-conference game of the regular season Tuesday night, defeating Belmont at the Clash in Cullman, 6-4.
Alabama (46-4) scored in each of the first three innings and tacked on another in the fifth to build a six-run lead before Belmont (26-18) made a late push in the seventh, scoring four before a strikeout ended the rally. Junior Elissa Brown scored twice at the top of the order and stole three bases, with sophomore KB Sides also crossing the plate twice. Junior Taylor Clark earned her first hit as a member of the Crimson Tide before driving in a run later in the game. In the circle, senior Courtney Gettins (6-2) got the win with 5.0 shutout innings.
Alabama drew a pair of walks to begin the home half of the first and both runners were off on the strikeout pitch in the next at-bat to move into scoring position. Two batters later, senior Reagan Dykes drew another walk but ball four ran to the backstop, allowing Brown to score from third and give Alabama the early 1-0 lead.
With two out in the bottom of the second, Clark knocked her first hit as a member of the Crimson Tide up the middle before stealing second in the next at-bat. A single to shallow center from Brown scored Clark to make it 2-0 and Brown came around on another single from sophomore Kaylee Tow to stretch it to 3-0. Alabama kept it rolling in the bottom of the third, loading the bases before a missed tag attempt between second and third went down as an RBI fielder's choice with the score now 4-0. A bases-loaded walk pushed the score to 5-0 before Belmont made a pitching change and finished the inning with a strikeout to get out of the jam.
The Bruins threatened it the top of the fourth, loading the bases with one out but a fly ball to right and a force out at third got the Tide out of the jam and preserved the shutout. Sides led off the bottom of the fifth with a single, stole second and then scurried to third on an errant throw. Freshman pinch-hitter Kayla Davis lifted a fly ball to right, allowing Sides to tag up and score on the sacrifice fly to make it 6-0.
Belmont drew a leadoff walk in the sixth and junior Sarah Cornell entered to pitch in relief. The Bruins would go on to load the bases for a second time, but a popup got the Tide out of the jam yet again and kept it a 6-0 game. With the score the same in the top of the seventh, Belmont put up a late fight with four runs in the seventh, including a two-run home run, but it was not enough as Alabama held on to win, 6-4.
Next, Alabama hosts its final home games of the regular season, welcoming Kentucky for a three-game series starting Friday, April 26 at 6:30 p.m. CT. Game two will air live on ESPN at 8 p.m. CT Saturday, April 27 and the series finale on SEC Network at 2 p.m. CT Sunday, April 28.