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April 17, 2003

Columbia, S.C. – The 16th-ranked Gamecock softball team (31-12, 15-7) will host their final SEC home series for the season as they welcome the 17th-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide (36-15, 19-5). The series begins Friday, April 18 with a 5 p.m. doubleheader and game three will be Saturday, April 19 at 1 p.m. Saturday will also be “Senior Day”. USC will recognize Kim Evans, Jodi Fittro, Danielle Quinones and Debralee Troesh for their careers at Carolina.

The Gamecocks are coming off of a 3-0 sweep over No. 20 Florida last weekend while the Tide went 2-1 against Mississippi State. Alabama leads the SEC by half a game over Georgia and three over the Gamecocks.

Leading the way for the Crimson Tide is Ashley Courtney who is hitting .368 with 56 hits. Alabama has three players in double figures for doubles, led by Jackie McClain with 14. Jennifer Reach and Stephanie VanBrakle both have 10. VanBrakle also leads the team with home runs with seven and has a 12-4 record with a 1.39 ERA. Erin Wright leads the team with a 16-5 record.

Led at the plate by Amber Curtis, the Gamecocks have the third best record in the SEC. Curtis is hitting .349 followed by Quinones with a .339 average. Troesh leads the team in home runs with eight. In the circle, Stacey Johnson has a 15-6 record and a 1.19 ERA.

Carolina leads the series against Alabama 12-6 but lost the series 2-1 last year in Tuscaloosa.