Alabama softball earns shocking No. 5 seed in NCAA tournament
By WVUA 23 Digital Reporter Sam Thornton
TUSCALOOSA-The University of Alabama softball team rejoiced in awe on Sunday night as the NCAA selection committee granted the Crimson Tide a fifth seed in this years NCAA tournament. Alabama players and softball fans nationwide were shocked at the seeding that nobody could’ve predicted, despite an encouraging performance in the SEC tournament.
Alabama was seeded fifth in the SEC Tournament where they defeated reigning SEC Champion Arkansas and displayed a hard fought battle against top seed Tennessee before being eliminated in the semifinals. Now, Alabama will host a regional in Tuscaloosa featuring Middle Tennessee, LIU and Central Arkansas with a chance to host a super regional if they advance.
So how did the Crimson Tide stand out to earn the right to the No. 5 seed?
NCAA selection committee chair Kelly Gatwood told ESPN that Alabama earned their seed by having six Top 10 wins on their resume. Gatwood mentioned that the Tide’s seeding had no implications to the health status of All-American pitcher Montana Fouts, who suffered a knee injury against Arkansas in SEC tournament play. There has been no update given on Fouts’ availability for the opening round in Tuscaloosa.
The committee’s decision for seeding teams was flexed from years past, where the rating percentage index dominated seeding placement. Alabama was predicted to be a No. 12 seed based on their rating percentage index this season.
The Crimson Tide will begin the double elimination tournament Friday in Tuscaloosa.