BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The No. 7/5 LSU softball team (40-12, 14-7 SEC) face the No. 4/5 Alabama Crimson Tide (47-6, 15-6 SEC). This will be LSU’s final regular season game with an SEC Championship on the line.
The series will kick off on Friday at 6 p.m. CT and will air on ESPN2. Saturday’s game will begin at 5 p.m. CT and will air on SEC Network. Sunday’s game will be at 1 p.m. and will stream live on SEC Network+.
The Tigers will honor six seniors this weekend as well. The pregame ceremonies will be split between Friday and Sunday. Friday’s lineup will be Elyse Thornhill, Amber Serrett and Amanda Sanchez, while Sunday’s lineup will feature Michaela Schlattman, Sydney Bourg.
All of the games in Tiger Park this weekend are completely sold out. Fans can show up at the Tiger Park ticket office to see if any tickets become available on game day.
“It’s an exciting weekend, but we have to make sure that we are tuning out the noise and focusing on just us and LSU softball. We’ve played every game all year one pitch at a time,” said head coach Beth Torina.
LSU is going into the series this weekend second place behind Alabama. With a sweep, the Tigers would outright SEC Champions. If the Tigers take two of the three games and Ole Miss takes one from Georgia, the Tigers and Alabama would be SEC Co-Champions.
Amanda Sanchez continues to lead the Tigers with a .411 batting average. Sanchez owns 16 doubles and eight home runs for 52 RBI. Aliyah Andrews has stolen 44 bases this season, which is just shy of tying the single-season record. Shelbi Sunseri and Shemiah Sanchez have almost combined for half of LSU’s home runs, with 15 and 16 respectively.
In the circle, Sunseri leads the Tigers with a 2.02 ERA and a 12-5 on the year with five shutouts. In 100.1 innings, Sunseri has struck out 73 and holds her opponents to a .207 average. Shelby Wickersham and Meribeth Gorsuch each have at least 10 wins on the year and combine for 10 shutouts. As a staff, they own a 2.46 ERA with an opposing batting average of .211.
The Tigers are currently 23-8 against the Crimson Tide in Tiger Park and own a 43-35 all-time record. The Tigers did not meet Alabama in the 2018 season and played on the road in 2017. LSU has won the last series in Tiger Park back in 2016, taking games one and three of the series. Under head coach Beth Torina, the Tigers are 9-8 against the Tide and are 5-1 in Tiger Park.
The Crimson Tide is coming into the weekend with a 47-6 overall record and are 15-6 at the top of the SEC. Alabama is hitting a .294 on the year with Bailey Hemphill leading the way for the Tide with a .372. Hemphill has tallied 55 with 21 home runs and 65 RBI. Alabama has five players in double-digit stolen bases with Elissa Brown leading the pack with 40.
“Alabama is good on all sides of the ball. They can pitch, hit for power and can run. They really have the complete package. We’re going to have to play really good softball, our best softball, which is what you have to do in the SEC every weekend,” said head coach Beth Torina.
In the circle, the Crimson Tide owns a 1.98 ERA as a staff with Montana Fouts leading the staff with a 1.07 ERA. She is 13-3 with four shutouts and four saves. In 117.1 innings, she has struck out 138 batters and holds her opponents to a .158 batting averge. Sarah Cornell is 19-1 on the year with a 1.99 ERA and two shutouts.
The Tigers will compete in the SEC Tournament next week in College Station, Texas. The Tigers await their opponent following the outcomes of the games this weekend.