Lady Vols Fall To Alabama In Program's Longest Softball Game

  • Sunday, May 26, 2024

Playing in the longest game in Tennessee softball history and NCAA Super Regional history, the third-ranked Lady Vols fell to No. 14 Alabama, 3-2, in game two of the Knoxville Super Regional at Sherri Parker Lee Stadium.
The Lady Vols (44-11) played the longest game in program history at 14 innings – surpassing a 13-inning affair against Mississippi State at the 2022 SEC Tournament. When Saturday's game versus Alabama reached the 13th frame, it became the longest game ever in Super Regionals.

Karlyn Pickens turned in a gutsy performance in the circle – pitching 9.1 innings in relief. The sophomore scattered five hits, allowed one run, walked three and struck out 10. Pickens suffered the loss as Alabama scored the game-winning run in the bottom of the 14th.
Payton Gottshall got the start for UT, tossing 3.2 innings before Pickens came on in the fourth. The graduate allowed two runs – one earned – on four hits. Gottshall fanned three without giving up a free pass.
Alabama's (37-18) Kayla Beaver pitched 10 innings out of the bullpen Saturday en route to her 18th win of the season. UT got six hits off Beaver but the graduate pitcher was able to pitch around the trouble to keep Tennessee at bay.
Beaver finished the night with four walks and four strikeouts.
Jocelyn Briski started for the Crimson Tide in the circle, going four innings and surrendering two runs on five hits.
The Tide scored first with a run in the first before Laura Mealer tied the game in the second with an RBI single to left.
Sophia Nugent put the Lady Vols ahead with a solo home run in the top half of the fourth, but Bailey Dowling answered back with her own solo home run in the bottom half of the frame to tie the game again at 2-2.
Pickens and Beaver kept the hitters guessing for the next nine innings before Alabama got back-to-back hits and an intentional base on balls to load the bases in the 14th. Kristen White then reached on a fielder's choice to drive in the game-winning run.
Tennessee and Alabama will play game three of the best-of-three series on Sunday at 4 p.m. ET on ESPN.

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