The No. 20 Washington softball team did what no one else all weekend could do against Alabama: score a run and avoid a mercy-rule loss. But it wasn’t enough in an 11-1 loss in Sunday’s final of the NCAA Tuscaloosa Regional.
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The No. 20 Washington softball team did what no one else all weekend could do against Alabama: score a run and avoid a mercy-rule loss. But it wasn’t enough in an 11-1 loss in Sunday’s final of the NCAA Tuscaloosa Regional.
Washington (42-17) didn’t have an answer for the Crimson Tide offense. No. 6 Alabama scored 11 runs on 10 hits in the win. Four of the 10 hits were home runs, and two were multi-run homers. The Huskies only went one inning where Alabama didn’t score, the fifth, when the Crimson Tide went down in order.
When it was Washington’s turn to bat, the Huskies found themselves in a similar situation as they were on Saturday.
They couldn’t crack the code on Alabama freshman right-hander Alexis Osorio (19-7), who held Washington to two hits Sunday and three total in two games. The Huskies hit .071 against Osorio.
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“Our job today was to be better than yesterday, with information, with a plan, knowing what to do offensively, and we hit some balls hard, put some balls in play well, which is great for our team and all we can ask for,” Washington coach Heather Tarr said.
“You don’t beat another good pitcher unless you’re in a two-run game.”
Sophomore designated player Casey Stangel had an RBI single with two outs in the bottom of the fourth to end Alabama’s tournament shutout and give Washington its lone run in two games against the regional host.
Senior right-hander Kasey Stanchek (15-8) lasted 12/3 innings in the loss. Senior left-hander Hailey Bator finished up after coming into the game in the top of the second. She gave up eight runs on seven hits, three of which were home runs. She walked three and hit one batter.
Washington put two on in the bottom of the seventh with no outs, but the potential rally stopped short with three straight fly outs.
“Obviously we didn’t like how the end was but we never gave up and we continued to fight and have each other’s back,” Washington senior center fielder Kylee Lahners said. “It was just cool to see the team stay together no matter what.”
Between losses to Alabama, the Huskies broke their program’s single-season home run record after hitting four against USC Upstate to avoid elimination Saturday. Washington finished the year with 84 home runs.
“So many high points; we could have easily folded,” Tarr said. “You look on paper and kind of know what pitching we have this year – you could have people quit, leave, pout, and we did nothing but compete and find a way to make lemonade. It was cool.”