No. 7 TENNESSEE Lady Vols
Overall Record: 52-12
Conference: SEC (2nd, 22-6)
Co-Head Coaches: Ralph and Karen Weekly

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No. 2 ALABAMA Crimson Tide
Overall Record: 55-7
Conference: SEC (1st, 23-5)
Head Coach: Patrick Murphy   


Venue: ASA Hall of Fame Stadium
Game Time: 7 p.m. ET
   Beth Mowins (play by play)
   Jessica Mendoza (color)
   Holly Rowe (field reporter)

Who to Watch for the Tide: CF Jennifer Fenton, .389, 63 R, 38 RBI, 43 SB; SS Kaila Hunt, .324, 20 HR, 74 RBI; P/UT Jackie Traina, 37-2, 1.67 ERA, 316 K, .308, 9 HR, 31 RBI

Who to Watch for the Lady Vols: 3B Raven Chavanne, .433, 44 R, 32 SB; 2B Lauren Gibson, .318, 54 R, 13 HR, 46 RBI; P Ivy Renfroe, 25-8, 1.73 ERA, 194 K


    def. UT Martin, 5-1 [ Box ]
    def. South Alabama, 5-2 [ Box ]
    def. South Alabama, 6-0 [ Box ]
Super Regional
    def. Michigan, 4-1 [ Box ]
    def. Michigan, 4-3 [ Box ]

    lost to Miami (Ohio), 1-0 [ Box ]
    def. UAB, 8-0 (5 inn.) [ Box ]
    def. Miami (Ohio), 8-0 (5 inn.) [ Box ]
    def. Virginia Tech, 2-1 [ Box ]
    def. Virginia Tech, 10-2  [ Box ]
Super Regional
    def. Georgia, 3-2 [ Box ]
    lost to Georgia, 1-0 [ Box ]
    def. Georgia, 2-1 [ Box ]

Rosters: Alabama | Tennesse Schedules: Alabama | Tennessee
More Postseason: National Statistics Scoreboard  Interactive Bracket  Video  Photos

Conference party lines out the door for Tide and Lady Vols

Talk to coaches around the Southeastern Conference and they may admit -- a little less reluctantly than fans, at least -- that they're pulling for each other this time of year. The league has become a powerhouse in softball, joining the likes of the Pac-12 and Big 12 in being frequent visitors to Oklahoma City in early June.

But, there's one thing still missing: a national title. That's why the league's coaches root for anyone still alive, hoping to get that first one for the conference.

Who will they be rooting for when Alabama and Tennessee face off in their first contest of the 2012 WCWS? Throw allegiances out the window, as it's now every team for itself.     

Tennessee vs. Alabama
Batting Average .302 .318
Home Runs 44 93
Runs Per Game 5.0 6.9
Stolen Bases 111 137
ERA 1.51 2.12

The Crimson Tide have breezed into OKC. The winning actually started with the SEC tournament, which was played at Rhoads Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Ala. The Tide grabbed that championship and have run off eight consecutive wins heading into its matchup with the Lady Vols.

The teams are more than familiar with each other. In the first meeting of the year, Bama came away with a thrilling 3-2 victory as pitcher Jackie Traina belted a two-out home run in the 11th inning. Alabama then suffered a 5-2 setback as the Lady Vols' Melissa Brown connected on a three-run bomb in the second inning to shock the Tide, who were ranked No. 1 in the nation at the time.

It was Alabama's first loss of the season. Tennessee co-head coach Ralph Weekly knows it won't be easy duplicating the task. 

"Seeing them as much as they are on television, we knew then and we know to this day they're very strong, they have very few weaknesses," Weekly said. "The 11-inning game we played with them, 1-0 Traina hits a home run. We just gotta go out, and I know this is coaches' talk, but we have to go out and play our very best and hope the breaks fall our way. They don't have a weakness."

Together, they are the top two hitting teams in the SEC with Alabama leading the way with a .318 average. UT sports a .307 average at the plate and is No. 2 in the league in ERA (1.53) and first in the nation with a .983 fielding percentage.

While Alabama has hardly been pushed, Tennessee has been on the verge of elimination each weekend of the postseason. A week after losing its first regional game then winning four consecutive, Tennessee had to rally in Game 3 of the super regional against another SEC foe, Georgia. UT reached its fifth WCWS with a sixth-inning comeback. 

"It's a gritty team and they have a lot of resolve," Weekly said. "We use the term 'refuse to lose'. They really, with their back to the wall, they seem to be better." 

Playing in the SEC, that happens a lot.

                                                                                                               -- Jerry Trickie,

► Tennessee improved to a perfect 5-0 in super regional play as the Lady Volunteers have never failed to reach the WCWS when advancing past the first weekend of the postseason. UT needed all three games to get past Georgia last weekend. 

► Ellen Renfroe leads the Lady Vols with 27 wins but it has been older sister Ivy who has carried the postseason load, earning all six of the wins.

► Raven Chavanne ranks among the top 10 hardest to strike out with only six Ks this season in 180 at-bats. Chavanne has also reached base in 43 consecutive games.

► Tennessee is 12-7 in one-run games this season, including going 2-1 last weekend in one-run super regional contests.  

► Alabama is making its eighth appearance in the WCWS, all under coach Patrick Murphy. The Tide have an all-time record of 8-14.

► Jennifer Fenton has been on fire since the start of the SEC tournament, driving in 17 runs in eight games.

► Jackie Traina owns a 37-2 record on the year and had won 28 consecutive decisions dating to last year until falling at Georgia April 19. With one more victory, she would tie Shelley Laird for the school single-season record for wins set in 2000.

► With 55 wins entering the WCWS, Alabama has extended its SEC record streak to eight consecutive seasons with at least 50 victories.