March 23, 2011
Box Score | Quotes/Notes
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - A solid day at the dish from Josh Rosecrans paired with a top-notch start from Trey Pilkington helped propel the Alabama baseball team to the 9-5 win over Jacksonville State, Wednesday afternoon at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.
"Trey Pilkington had a really good start tonight and gave us just what you want to see in midweek games," UA head coach Mitch Gaspard said. "He took us deep into the game. Offensively we had the big inning early where we scored five and was able to get on top. Overall I was really pleased with Pilkington and I thought our offense certainly did enough."
Rosecrans excelled in the designated hitter role on Wednesday, going 3-for-5 with a home run, a career-high four RBI, and also crossed the plate twice himself. Also putting forth a solid day at the dish was Taylor Dugas. The center fielder reached base four of the five times he stepped in the box, going 1-for-2 with three walks and two runs.
Sophomore righty Trey Pilkington made his first start of the 2011 season and excelled in the role, earning the win to improve his record to 1-0 on the year. Pilkington threw 6.1 innings, allowing four runs - three earned - on six hits while walking one and striking out three.
Taylor Wolfe, Case Nixon and Brett Whitaker combined to throw the final 2.2 innings, allowing only one earned run on one hit while striking out two. JSU started Taylor Sparks took the loss for JSU, bringing his record to 0-1 on the year.
Jacksonville State opened up the scoring for the day in the top of the first when a double, a single and a sac fly helped to cross the first run and set the score at 1-0.
A five-run, four-hit third inning helped the Tide take a 5-1 lead. Dugas walked to lead off the inning and the bases were soon loaded thanks to back-to-back singles from Jared Reaves and Austen Smith. With packed basepaths, Rosecrans singled a sharp liner down the left field line to plate two with Smith moving to third. A sac bunt from Andrew Miller moved the runners up, but a throwing error from the Gamecock pitcher allowed Smith to cross the plate. Jon Kelton was next up and continued the runs streak by hitting a single to left that helped add two more runs to close out the scoring for the inning.
Alabama added another run in the bottom of the fifth thanks a Josh Rosecrans leadoff home run. The solo bomb traveled over the scoreboard in left to give Alabama the 6-1 lead.
The Tide put another tally on the board in the sixth, after Dugas walked and eventually come around to score on a bang-bang play at home thanks to Smith's single to left. Rosecrans followed suit and plated his fourth RBI of the game on a single through the left side to boost the score to 8-1.
The Gamecocks attempted a comeback with three runs in the top of the seventh. A double down the left field line plated a run and ended Pilkington's afternoon with the lead still intact. A grounder to second that resulted in an error allowed another run to score for Jacksonville State. JSU added one more run thanks to a bases-loaded walk, cutting the Alabama lead to 8-4.
JSU added another run in the top of the eighth thanks to a bases-loaded grounder that brought a run across, setting the score at 8-5.
Alabama added one more to its total in the bottom of the eighth, when a grounder to the shortstop resulted in a throwing error, allowing Bennett to score another Tide run and set the score at 9-5, the eventual final.
Alabama returns to action this weekend at The Joe when the Crimson Tide opens SEC play against the Kentucky Wildcats. Friday's game will kick off at 6:35 p.m. CT start. Saturday kicks off at 2:05 p.m. and Sunday at 1:05 p.m. Starters for Friday's game have yet to be announced.