A three-run home run by second baseman Bailey Dowling to center was more than what Sarah Cornell needed to get the win as Alabama softball defeated UAB 7-1 on Wednesday evening.
The pitcher threw five innings, allowing just one run on three hits while earning her first win of the young season. Cornell threw 88 pitches and saw her ERA drop to 2.00.
Dowling's home run came in the first inning after right fielder Jenna Johnson was hit by a pitch while leading off, and first baseman Kaylee Tow drew a two-out walk.
"I think the whole thing was settled in the first inning when Bailey Dowling hit that home run," Crimson Tide coach Patrick Murphy said. "That was a big, big hit for us. It kind of set the tone for the whole night."
The runs continued a couple of strong trends for this year's team:
- Overall, Alabama has scored 22 of its 68 runs this season in the first inning.
- The Crimson Tide came into the game hitting 26-for-69 (.377), including 30 of the the 50 RBIs, wit two outs.
- Dowling had seen the most at-bats with two outs, going 7-for-12 (.583) with nine RBIs, three doubles and two home runs.
No. 3 Alabama (9-0) plated another two-out run in the second, and rallied for an additional two two runs in the third. An unearned run in the fourth completed the scoring against UAB (4-5).
Johnson later added an RBI-single, but left the game after suffering an undisclosed injury to her leg or knee and will have an MRI Thursday.
Maddie Morgan and Claire Jenkins brought in runs as well at Rhoads Stadium. Designated player Bailey Hemphill went 2-for-3.
"In that situation we have that moment we feel like we're playing for the player who goes down," Hemphill said. "When Jenna went down we kind of went 'We have to win it for Jenna.'"
Amy Woodham (0-4) took the loss, giving up four earned runs over two innings.
Alabama improved to 26-0 all-time against UAB, including 14-0 at home.
The Crimson Tide will face Memphis (doubleheader), North Carolina (DH) and Troy while hosting the Easton Crimson Classic this weekend.