Alabama Falls to SE Missouri State, 8-3



Feb. 21, 2009

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala.-  Alabama suffered its first loss of the 2009 season, falling 8-3 to Southeast Missouri State on Saturday afternoon at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.  The Redhawks out-hit the Crimson Tide 14-7 in the game and scored multiple runs three times.

Tyrell Cummings and Trenton Moses had three hits apiece to lead the offense, while Jim Klocke added two hits and two RBI.  Left-hand pitcher James Leigh gave the Redhawks a 114-pitch effort out of the bullpen to help his team even the series.

"They beat us in every phase of the game," Alabama head coach Jim Wells said.  "The game started off poorly.  They kept extending the lead.  We hit some balls hard late in the game, but it was too little too late.  There wasn't one phase of the game they were not better than us today."

Southeast Missouri State (1-1) scored two runs in the first inning off senior left-hander Miers Quigley.  The Redhawks plated the two runs on four hits and were aided by an Alabama error.  Matt Wagner and Trenton Moses each drove in a run in the inning for the Redhawks.

The Redhawks chased Quigley in the second inning after loading the bases with one out.  Sophomore right-hander Nathan Kilcrease retired the next two hitters as SEMO left the bases loaded for the second straight inning.  Quigley allowed two runs and five hits in 1 1/3 innings with one walk and two strikeouts.

The Alabama offense seemed to be sparked by Kilcrease's performance on the mound and scored two runs in the bottom of the second inning to tie the game at 2-2.  Brandon May opened the inning with a single to left and moved to second on Clay Jones' fly ball to center field.  May then moved to third on a wild pitch and Matthes walked to put runners on the corners with one out.  Kyle Moore reached on an error by the right fielder Cummings as May scored from third.  Matthes and Moore then executed a double steal, before Matthes came in on a balk.

Southeast Missouri State starter Todd Strahlendorf left the game with an injury with two outs in the second inning before Leigh was summoned from the bench.  He was called with a balk chase Matthes in from third with the tying run. 

The Redhawks took the lead for good on Jim Klocke's two-out, two-run single in the third inning to make it 4-2. 

Kilcrease (0-1), the second of six UA pitchers, allowed two runs and two hits in 3 2/3 innings and struck out six batters.

Leigh (1-0) held the Tide to one run and six hits in 7 2/3 innings of relief for the win. He walked one and fanned seven batters.

Southeast Missouri State scored three more runs in the sixth inning off Austin Graham to take a 7-2 lead.  The Redhawks had four straight hits in the inning, including RBI singles by Wagner and Moses.

Jones stroked his first career home run to lead off the bottom of the seventh inning as the Tide closed the gap to 7-3.  Jones, who went 2-for-4 with a solo home run in the game, was the only UA player with two hits in the loss.

The two teams will conclude the three-game series on Sunday, Feb. 22, at 2:05 p.m. (CST).  Freshman left-hander Adam Morgan will make his first career start for the Tide, while Southeast Missouri State will counter with junior Greg Hendrix, who pitched the last two seasons at Shelton State Community College in Tuscaloosa. Tickets are available on or at the Sewell-Thomas Stadium box office, beginning two hours prior to first pitch. 

Game Notes: 
*Alabama senior right-hander Casey Kebodeaux gave the Tide a solid outing out of the pen on Saturday.  He retired eight of the 10 batters he faced and stranded two inherited runners in the seventh inning.  He was charged with one unearned run and one hit in 2 2/3 innings with three strikeouts. 

*Alabama used six pitchers in Saturday's loss, including Miers Quigley, Nathan Kilcrease, Austin Graham, Austin Evans, Casey Kebodeaux and Adam Scott.

*Senior right fielder Kent Matthes reached base three times and stole a career-high three bases on Saturday.

*Alabama leads the all-time series with Southeast Missouri State, 7-3, but has its six-game series winning streak snapped with Saturday's loss.