Lady Toppers earn rematch with Alabama in Regional title game

Junior Tiffany Gooch gets the Lady Toppers team ready before the game. WKU won 3-0 against USC Upstate in the NCAA Regional Softball Tournament at Rhoads Stadium in Tuscaloosa, Ala. on Saturday May 18, 2013.

Kyle Williams

TUSCALOOSA, Ala, – The WKU (43-17) softball team is matched up against the defending national champion Alabama (44-13) today in the Tuscaloosa Regional championship game at 1 p.m. at Rhoads Stadium.

The Lady Toppers capitalized on three South Carolina Upstate errors to earn a spot in the championship game following a tough one-run loss to host Alabama on Saturday.

WKU needs two straight wins to claim the Regional championship due to the double-elimination format of the tournament. The second game, if necessary, is slated for 3:30 p.m.

Coach Tyra Perry said the Lady Toppers need to correct their mistakes on defense to reverse the outcome against the No. 10-seed Crimson Tide on Sunday.

“We need to play our game on defense,” Perry said. “…The errors that we made in that particular game cost us.”

Alabama loaded the bases three times in the bottom of the third inning in the first matchup, which resulted in four runs on three hits and one error.

Junior infielder Olivia Watkins said the Lady Toppers are ready to avenge the first loss to the host team.

“I feel like it’s revenge because we should have taken the first game away from them, but it’s a great opportunity,” Watkins said. I’m glad to be here and so is my team.”