April 30, 2014
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The No. 12-ranked Alabama baseball team homered four times against the Samford Bulldogs en route to a 9-5 non-conference victory on Wednesday night from Joe Lee Griffin Field. Mikey White tied a school record with five hits in the game and had two of the four home runs for the Crimson Tide.
White opened the game with his fourth home run of the season to spark the five-hit performance. After a single in the second, he homered for the second time in the game in the fourth inning. He singled in the sixth and eighth innings to become the 30th player in school to have a school-record five hits in a single game. White also set new career highs with four RBI and four runs scored.
No other player in the Bama had more than one hit, but Ben Moore extended his hitting streak to 10 games when he hit his team-leading seventh home run of the season in a four-run Bama eighth. Wade Wass had a solo home run, Georgie Salem had a double and an RBI and Chance Vincent had an RBI single.
Alabama had its biggest home run output in almost four years, as the last time the Tide had four home runs in a game came on June 6, 2010 in the Georgia Tech NCAA Regional against Georgia Tech. The Tide finished the day with 11 total hits, making the 25th game this season with double-digits in hits.
Alabama used five pitchers and starter Geoffrey Bramblett (4-1) picked up the win after going 3.2 innings, allowing two runs on two hits with four walks and four strikeouts. Samford starter Cody Pugh (3-4) took the loss after allowing four runs on five hits with four walks and three strikeouts in three plus innings. Pugh was one of eight pitchers used by the Bulldogs.
Alabama jumped out to an early lead, getting a pair of solo home runs from White and Wass in the first inning. Leading off the game, White hit a 2-2 pitch off Pugh over the wall in left field. After the next two hitters got out, Wass crushed a 1-1 pitch to deep left center field to stake the Tide to a 2-0 lead before the Bulldogs swung the bats.
After the first two Crimson Tide hitters were retired in the second, White singled and Salem followed with a double to the left field corner to drive in White from first. With two outs in the Bama fourth, White homered for the second time in the game, this time with a runner aboard to increase the Tide’s lead to 5-0.
Samford answered in the bottom of the inning, getting an RBI on a walk by Tripp Martin to score Caleb Bryson, who singled to start the Bulldogs’ two-out rally. Jared Watson followed with a swinging bunt single to drive in the second run of the inning, cutting the Alabama lead to 5-2 after four.
The Bulldogs scored twice in the bottom of the fifth when they got back-to-back one-out solo home runs by Drew McWhorter and Heath Quinn off UA reliever Ray Castillo, cutting the Tide’s lead to 5-4.
With a runner on second and one out in the bottom of the seventh, Quinn singled to left field but Casey Hughston made a strong throw to the plate to gun down Frankie Navarrete, preserving the Alabama one-run lead.
In the next inning, Alabama responded by scoring four times to extend its lead to 9-4. Bama got its first run on a single by Vincent, before White had an RBI single for his fifth hit of the game. After White advanced to second on a ground out, Moore hit the first pitch of the ensuing at-bat over the wall in left center.
Alabama returns to Southeastern Conference action this weekend when it hosts No. 5 Florida in a three-game series. The series begins on Friday night with first pitch scheduled for 6:35 p.m. CT at Sewell-Thomas Stadium. Game two is scheduled for 3:06 p.m. CT on Saturday and the series finale is Sunday at 2:05 p.m. CT.
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