April 16, 2011
Box Score Game 1 |
Box Score Game 2 |
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - The No. 24 ranked University of Alabama baseball team (24-15, 8-7 SEC) came up short in Saturday's doubleheader, as the Tennessee Volunteers (21-15, 4-11 SEC) defeated them 2-1 and 1-0 in games one and two, respectively. The loss marks the second SEC series loss for the Tide and the first home series loss of 2011.
"We just couldn't find any offense all day long," UA head coach Mitch Gaspard said. "We had a few opportunities and just didn't have enough quality at-bats. We didn't really put any pressure on them the entire day, and of course their pitching did a nice job."
Alabama was held to nine total hits in the two seven inning games, as the Tide had four hits in game one and five hits in the nightcap. Andrew Miller was 2-for-5 on the day, with both hits coming in the second game. Jared Reaves was the only other player to have two hits in the doubleheader. The Crimson Tide scored just one unearned run in the two games.
Tennessee was led by Zach Osborne, who was 4-for-7 with a run scored and an RBI, and Matt Duffy who was 3-for-6 with a run scored and an RBI.
"I felt that the last three games we have been really good offensively and then today was a rough day to play two games," Gaspard said. "We had a poor offensive approach today, and unfortunately we played two games and were never really able to get out of it. When you score one run in two games it's tough to win. We'll try to regroup, get in to next week, and get some things squared up offensively. We'll go with it from there."
Alabama dropped the first game of the doubleheader by a score of 2-1, as UA starting pitcher Adam Morgan took the loss to drop to 4-3 on the year. Morgan threw a complete game, allowing two earned runs on eight hits with five strikeouts. Tennessee starter Steven Gruver (4-4) also threw a complete game to earn the win, as he held the Tide to one unearned run on four hits with five strikeouts and five walks.
Tennessee opened the scoring in the top of the third inning when Zach Osborne's single to right-center plated Ethan Bennett, who doubled to lead off the inning. Tennessee extended its lead to 2-0 in the fourth inning when an RBI single to right field by Josh Liles scored Matt Duffy from second base.
The Crimson Tide cut the Tennessee lead in half when James Tullidge scored from second following a Brock Bennett single. Tullidge advanced to third on the hit, but scored when the third baseman's throw sailed wide of first base. Jared Reaves reached on a fielding error, and with runners on first and second, Taylor Dugas flied out to center field to end the inning.
Alabama had runners on first and second with one out in the seventh, but Gruver got Taylor Dugas to ground into a 4-6-3 double play to end the game.
Bennett, Reaves, Austen Smith and Brett Booth had the four hits for Alabama. Osborne was 2-for-4 with an RBI and Tyler Horne and Liles, who also had an RBI, were 2-for-3 for the Volunteers.
Alabama dropped game two of the day and lost the series in the process, as the Volunteers defeated the Crimson Tide by a score of 1-0, with the only run of the game coming in the first inning.
With runners on first and second base, cleanup hitter Matt Duffy doubled to left-center to plate one run in the top of the first. Pilkington was able to minimize the damage, striking out the next batter and getting the final batter to ground to third, but the one run is all the Vols would need.
Nick Blount (1-0) earned the win for the Volunteers as Alabama starter Trey Pilkington (1-3) took the loss. Tennessee reliever Nick Williams earned his second save of the year.
Alabama returns to action on Tuesday, April 19 with a road game against the Samford Bulldogs. First pitch for the non-conference game is scheduled for 6 p.m. CT from Joe Lee Griffin Stadium in Birmingham. The starters for the game have yet to be announced.