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CEDAR FALLS, Iowa – The top-ranked Alabama softball team claimed its first tournament championship of the season as it downed North Dakota State, 10-0, Sunday morning to secure the UNI-Dome Classic title. With the victory the Crimson Tide starts the season 5-0.
UA banged out 12 hits and smashed four home runs on the day. Freshmen Haylie McCleney and Kallie Case along with sophomore Danae Hays each tallied three hits in the win.
Junior Jackie Traina improved to 3-0 on the season after tossing the five-inning shutout. The All-American allowed four hits and struck out eight while walking one.
Alabama scored a run in the bottom of the first to start things off. McCleney collected her 11th hit of the tournament when she doubled to left. Then after a stolen base and a passed ball, she scored on a Kaila Hunt sac-fly to right-center.
After making a run-saving diving grab in the top of the third, McCleney led off the bottom half with a home run that caromed off the top of the wall in center and over to give the Tide a 2-0 lead. The scoring continued in the frame after a Kayla Braud walk, Hunt destroyed a home run well over the wall in left to push the score to 4-0.
McCleney once again got the Tide on the scoreboard. With two outs in the fourth, the rookie reached on a bunt single, stole second and then scored on a Braud single to center to give Bama a 5-0 lead.
A two-run shot in the fifth by sophomore Danae Hays gave the Tide a 7-0 lead. Freshman Kallie Case collected her third hit of the contest before Hays pulverized her first home run of the season over the wall in deep left-center.
Senior Keima Davis ended the game with a three-run homer to cap off the tournament with a 10-0 win. On the weekend Davis hit a grand slam and two three-run homers.
McCleney led an impressive weekend from the Bama rookies. The Morris, Ala., native hit .722 (13-for-18) with nine runs, two doubles, a triple, two home runs, four RBI and five stolen bases. The four freshmen combined to hit .622 (23-for-37) with 11 stolen bases and 17 runs.
On the weekend the Tide hit .384 with nine home runs and added 20 stolen bases. UA outscored its opponents 43-12.
Alabama will open the home portion of its home schedule when it faces instate foe South Alabama. The two teams will meet on Tuesday, Feb. 12 at 3 p.m.
Christopher Walsh covers Alabama football for BamaOnline, 247Sports, and is the author of 18 books.
Dang, looks like the ladies were on it for this tourney.. Great Job Ladies and keep it up..Roll Tide
Bama can win it all again as long as Traina stays healthy.
One of the other two pitchers will have to step up like Amanda Locke did last year
ROLL TIDE! Congrats!
The other 2 pitchers are good as well. Good enough to win with run support. This team is bad @ss.
Thanks for this article Chris and all you did for the softball tournament coverage this weekend.
My wife and I had the pleasure of attending all three days of this tournament in Cedar Falls, IA.
We saw some outstanding softball all 5 BAMA games and we met some great players, fans, parents and even grandparents of players. There are lots of BAMA softball fans in Iowa based on this weekend. Coach Patrick Murphy is a large reason for this. We met several members of his family and friends, and even an old coach of his.
You are in for a treat with our softball team this year. They added more speed and power this year. They are going to be fun to watch. Way to go BAMA ladies!
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