#3 Lady Vols Rally To Defeat Alabama, 3-2

  • Friday, May 24, 2024

 Laura Mealer blasted a game-winning two-run home run in the bottom of the fifth as the third-ranked Lady Vols knocked off No. 14 Alabama, 3-2, in game one of the Knoxville Super Regional at Sherri Parker Lee Stadium.
Tennessee (44-10) trailed 2-0 entering the fifth and scratched across three runs with two outs in the frame. A fielding error and heads-up baserunning by Rylie West scored the first run as West sprinted around third and beat a throw home as she slid under the tag.

With the inning extended by the error, Mealer came to the plate and took a 0-1 pitch over the wall in center to put Tennessee ahead 3-2.
Sophomore right-hander Karlyn Pickens started in the circle for Tennessee, tossing five innings en route to her 22nd victory. Pickens scattered four hits, allowed just two runs – one earned – with one walk and seven strikeouts.
Graduate Payton Gottshall relieved Pickens in the sixth, earning the save. Gottshall gave up two hits, walked none and struck out two in her outing.
Tennessee had three hits on the night from McKenna GibsonZaida Puni and Mealer.
Alabama cobbled together six hits – led by Kristen White going 2-for-4 at the plate. Kayla Beaver started for the Crimson Tide, pitching 4.2 innings. The graduate allowed three runs on two hits – all unearned – with a walk and two strikeouts.
Jocelyn Briski came on in relief and finished out the final 1.1 innings.

The Tide scored a run in the first after White led off with a single to left - advancing to third on an error - before scoring on a wild pitch later in the frame. Alabama scored again in the second off an infield single. 
Tennessee is now 41-0 when scoring three-plus runs and 29-0 when leading after five innings.
Tennessee and Alabama return to the diamond for game two of the Knoxville Super Regional at 3 p.m. ET on ESPN.

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