Interviews with Coach Harris-Champer and Kaylee Puailoa following Georgia's 10-2 victory over Alabama.
April 25, 2014
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The No. 13/17 Georgia softball team evened the series with a 10-2, six-inning win over the No. 7/7 Alabama Crimson Tide on Friday, April 25 at Rhoads Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. With the win, the Bulldogs move to 39-11 on the year and 12-8 in Southeastern Conference play. Alabama falls to 41-9 overall and 16-4 in the SEC.
The 10 runs were the most given up by the Alabama softball team this year. It was also the first time the Crimson Tide has been run-ruled at home since 2003, when it fell 12-4 to Georgia. The win also marked the first time that Georgia has won in Tuscaloosa since 2007.
Highlighting the win was a grand slam by Kaylee Puailoa in the third inning. On the day, Puailoa went 1-for-3 with a walk, five RBI and scored a run. Paige Wilson had a productive day at the plate, going 3-for-4 and scored three times. Tina Iosefa also had a two-hit day, while Anna Swafford delivered her 10th home run of the season.
Geri Ann Glasco was tremendous from the circle in her complete-game performance that moved her to 15-4 on the year. She held the potent Alabama offense to just four hits. She allowed two runs, only one of which was earned, and struck out two batters. Leslie Jury got the start and the loss for Alabama, dropping to 14-6 overall. She allowed 10 runs on nine hits and six walks in 5.2 innings of work. Sydney Littlejohn threw the final 0.1 inning for the Tide.
After a pair of scoreless innings, the Bulldogs took a 7-0 lead over the Crimson Tide in the top of the third inning. Bethany Beggs led things off with a five-pitch walk before a pair of infield singles by Samantha LaZear and Wilson loaded the bases with nobody out. A RBI groundout to second by Glasco allowed Beggs to cross the plate and give the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead. With runners at first and second, Jury intentionally walked Alex Hugo to load the bases. Iosefa drove a pitch into shallow left center for a RBI single that made it a 2-0 game. With the bases still loaded, Puailoa fell behind before pulling a home run high over the wall down the right field for a grand slam. It was the second grand slam of her Georgia career and her first this season. The grand slam put Georgia up 6-0. Swafford followed with a solo home run of her own that put Georgia up 7-0. It was Swafford's 10th home run of the year, making her the third Bulldog with double-digit home runs this season.
Alabama got a run back in the bottom of the frame to make it a 7-1 game. After two quick outs, Haylie McCleney doubled to right center before scoring on a single and a throwing error. Glasco settled in and retired the next two batters in order to end the inning, leaving two runners aboard.
Georgia added a pair of runs in the top of the fourth inning to extend its lead to 9-1. A one-out single to Wilson got the scoring started for the Bulldogs as she laced the 1-1 pitch to left. After Hugo drew a five-pitch walk, Iosefa roped a double into the left field corner that allowed both Wilson and Hugo to score and extend Georgia's lead.
Molly Fichtner led off the bottom of the fourth with a solo home run that made it a 9-2 game. After a single, Marisa Runyon hit into a fielder's choice that saw Georgia get the lead runner. Peyton Granthan grounded into a 1-4-3 double play that ended the inning. It was the second inning-ending double turned the Bulldogs in the game.
Georgia extended its lead to eight runs in the top of the sixth inning. With one out, Wilson doubled off the wall in center. Jury then issued three-straight walks, including a bases-loaded walk to Puailoa that scored Wilson and made it a 10-2 game.
Georgia and Alabama wrap up the series tomorrow, April 26 at noon ET in a nationally televised game on ESPNU.