"We Have Nothing To Lose" - UTC Softball On The Road To Tuscaloosa
Wednesday, May 18, 2022 - by Joseph Dycus
UTC loads the bus on their way to Tuscaloosa.
- photo by Joseph Dycus
A crowd of enthusiastic supporters sent UTC’s softball team off to Tuscaloosa in style on Wednesday afternoon. The crowd cheered the SoCon champions on as they boarded the bus bound for Alabama, where the team will play against Alabama, Stanford or Murray State.
The Mocs sat at 25-25 entering the SoCon tournament, where they went on a dreamlike run to clinch their first conference championship since 2019. This run included a championship game where Chattanooga rallied from down five runs in the seventh inning to win.
Ace pitcher Brooke Parrott says the team bonded during the tournament in a way that wasn’t possible in the regular season.
“I think a big part of it was that we were together for such a long period of time,” Parrott says. “We were never separated for like 10 days, so I think we really bonded on that trip. The first game was a close 10 inning game and we came through. That’s what started it.”
“We were together forever, and I wouldn’t have had it any other way” slugger Reagan Armour, who hit three home runs in. that championship game, says. “We got to make new experiences and learned more about each other, laughed and had fun.”
Waiting for the Mocs is the 41-11 Alabama Crimson Tide, who are playing de facto home games as SEC champions. Alabama is on a five game winning streak and boasts an impressive collection of talented players, but Armour says the Mocs have what it takes to pull off an upset.
“Alabama has everything to lose and we have nothing to lose,” Armour says. “We’re going in there with our heads held high and just trying to prove a point. We’re very excited to go in there and make our mark.”
In order to “make a mark,” the Mocs will need to string together good at bats against arguably the greatest pitcher in college softball. Montana Fouts has been named to the last two All-American teams, CWS All-tournament teams, is the reigning NFCA pitcher of the year, and has won just about every accolade a pitcher could win.
“I kept up with Montana Fouts last year, and I’m actually kind of a fan of hers,” Parrott says. “So I’m really excited I’ll get to play her, because that’s not something I’ll have the chance to do again.”
“I think it’s going to be very fun,” Armour says. “It was weird, because somebody said “Montana is studying you just like you’re studying her.” It’s weird to think that she’s thinking about us.”
The Mocs have a mix of experience and youthful energy on their team. On one side are freshmen like Presley Williamson, in the middle are players like Armour and Kaili Phillips, and then on the other end are vets such as Emily Coltharp, who was a freshman on the 2019 team, and Parrott. And every player on the team can be expected to give maximum effort against one of the titans of college softball.
“We have a lot of freshmen on the team, and I think the youngest is 18 But I’m 23 and the oldest on the team, so we have a big age range,” Parrott says. “We have a lot of fight in us, and we’re not going to give up.”
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