Two weeks of SEC softball are in the books. After the dust has settled, only two teams remain unbeaten to this point in the early season.
Those clubs are the Alabama Crimson Tide and the Florida Gators. The Tide and the Gators are 10-0 and 11-0 respectively, each having gotten off to blistering starts this season. Both have been boasted by great pitching as they rank 4th and 5th in the conference in ERA in the early goings and the Gators lead the league in strikeouts with 95.
The Tide took care of business, racking up five wins from Friday-Sunday. The biggest victory came over 9th-ranked Arizona, as ‘Bama beat the Wildcats 6-1. The victory is among the best in the conference this early in the season and certainly asserts them as one of the best teams in the league so far. Montana Fouts stood out, as the freshman won SEC Freshman of the Week honors after two complete games with 20 strikeouts and no walks, including eight strikeouts against UofA.
Florida, meanwhile, was headed again by Kelly Barnhill, who picked up her second SEC Pitcher of the Week honor in as many weeks. She had 14-strikeout performance against Arizona State and racked up 28 strikeouts in 13 innings pitched this past week. Essentially... Kelly Barnhill is dominant, but you probably knew that already.
Only two teams left the weekend with just one loss. Those were the Georgia Bulldogs and the Arkansas Razorbacks. Georgia’s won five in a row and shot up to 9-1 on the young season. Arkansas, meanwhile, hit a bump int he road but rebounded to win their last two games of the weekend. Alyssa DiCarlo continues to excel at the plate, as Georgia’s star slugger is up to .571 on the season with a league-high eight home runs and a slugging percentage of a whopping 1.679.
Arkansas’ Autumn Storms and Mary Haff remain two of the best pitchers in the conference after this weekend’s action as well. Storms’ ERA is just 0.50, fourth-best in the league, and she has 27 strikeouts to just three walks. Haff meanwhile has an ERA Of 1.12 now and 36 strikeouts and just four walks.
Four teams ended the weekend with losses, as LSU, Ole Miss, Tennessee and Texas A&M couldn’t finish the slate on a high note. That being said, all four teams are in good spots with no more than three losses on the year so far. Auburn, Kentucky, Mississippi State, Mizzou and South Carolina meanwhile all ended on high notes, going on runs of at least two wins in a row. Mizzou has collected six wins in a row, the third-longest winning streak ongoing so far.
South Carolina has won their last four, with Cayla Drotar being the catalyst. Drotar won SEC Player of the Week after a dynamite performance at the plate. She hit .636 during the Gamecock Invitational, racked up three home runs including a grand salami, scored four runs and drove in a whopping 12 RBI.
Kentucky is the closest to the .500 mark this season, as they’re up to 6-5 on the year. But UK has played an absolutely rigorous schedule so far, having played five ranked teams so far. They did tack on wins over ranked Oregon and James Madison squads, so it’s not all particularly bad for them at this juncture. Their nonconference schedule remains one of the toughest around as they still have matchups against Washington and UCLA looming ahead.