GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Alabama shut out Florida 3-0 Saturday afternoon to complete the series sweep and win its seventh straight game.
The series sweep is the first for Alabama (45-4, 14-4 SEC) over Florida (37-12, 9-9 SEC) since 2006 and its first in Gainesville since 2001. The two runs allowed this weekend is the fewest runs scored for the Gators in a three-game series vs. the Tide in Gainesville.
#SweepSZN 🧹🧹🧹— Alabama Softball (@AlabamaSB) April 20, 2019
🔘 Second-straight SEC series sweep, third this season
🔘 First sweep vs. Florida since 2006
🔘 First sweep vs. Florida in Gainesville since 2001#BamaSB | #RollTide pic.twitter.com/TGkEkhbZYM
For the third straight game, Alabama pitching was lights-out, with junior Krystal Goodman (9-0) throwing four shutout innings with six hits allowed (all singles) and five strikeouts. Freshman Montana Fouts backed her up with three shutout innings behind her, allowing just one hit for her fourth save of the season. Two of Alabama's three runs came off the bat of sophomore KB Sides, who blasted her second home run of the season.
Scoreless in the top of the second, senior Reagan Dykes drew a leadoff walk and junior Claire Jenkins laid down a bunt two batters later. Jenkins reached safely after the ball was dropped at first, allowing Dykes to move to third on the error but she kept going and stole home after the Gator first baseman held onto the ball, giving Alabama the 1-0 lead.
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Florida threatened in the bottom of the third, putting a pair in scoring position after back-to-back base hits with one out. Goodman rallied to catch the next two Gators swinging, stranding them on base to hold the one-run lead. Alabama increased its lead in the next half-inning as Sides pulled a two-run home run to right field to make it 3-0.
After a leadoff single for the Gators in the bottom of the fifth, Fouts entered in relief and retired the next three straight, including a leaping grab in center from junior Elissa Brown to keep Florida out of the run column. In the bottom of the sixth, a walk and a throwing error put the first two Gator batters on base and a groundout moved them both into scoring position. Jenkins fielded the hard liner in the next at-bat and made the quick flip to sophomore Maddie Morgan at third to catch the runner off the bag, ending the inning on the 6-5 double play to preserve the 3-0 lead.
Roll Tide! #5 @AlabamaSB 🥎 makes it a CLEAN SWEEP 🧹 of the #6 Gators! pic.twitter.com/HwIADXLAWC— Alabama Athletics (@UA_Athletics) April 20, 2019
Alabama couldn't add to its lead in the top of the seventh and Florida got the leadoff batter on in the bottom half, but the next three were retired in order to complete the win and the series sweep.
Next, Alabama travels to Cullman, Alabama, for a neutral-site contest Tuesday, April 23 at 6 p.m. CT against Belmont at Heritage Park.
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