Missouri softball loses series finale to Alabama

Sunday, April 7, 2013 | 4:16 p.m. CDT

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – What was expected to be a pitcher's duel between two of the Southeastern Conference's top pitchers turned into Missouri's first time being on the losing end of a run-rule game this season.

In 5.2 innings, No. 4 Alabama (35-6, 10-5 SEC) beat No. 6 Missouri (23-4, 8-3 SEC) 14-6 on Sunday in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Tigers ace Chelsea Thomas, who started all three games of the series, gave up 11 earned runs on 11 hits and 8 walks. Coach Ehren Earleywine knew going into Game 3 that his ace most likely wouldn't be at her best but didn't think he had another option.

Missouri's offense showed life in the fourth inning, scoring four runs on a bases loaded walk and doubles by Jenna Marston and Kelsea Roth. But Alabama responded with a run in the fifth and then three runs in the sixth.

The game ended early when Thomas gave up a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the sixth to give the Crimson Tide an eight-run lead and the series victory.

The Tigers are now 3-3 against ranked opponents this season.

Missouri heads to Kansas City on Wednesday for a doubleheader against Missouri- Kansas City that was a late addition to the schedule. Game 1 is set for 3 p.m. with Game 2 following at 5

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