Bush, Moore Power Bama Past Samford, 11-3



TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Senior second baseman Evan Bush (Rainbow City) had three hits and four RBI, including his 25th career home run, as the University of Alabama baseball team beat Samford 11-3 Tuesday night at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.

Bush hit his 25th career home run to lead off the third inning and then added a two-run triple in the sixth and an RBI single in the seventh to pace the Tide's 11-hit attack.

"It's nice to see him have the game he did," Alabama head coach Jim Wells said.  "He is one of our main hitters and he has to be that guy.  He bounced back nicely tonight with a good game."

Redshirt freshman Kyle Moore (Wetumpka), playing in his first game for the Crimson Tide, added two hits and four RBI, including his first career home run.  Moore gave the Crimson Tide a 1-0 lead with an RBI ground out in the second inning, added an RBI single in the third inning and capped a five-run sixth inning with a two-run home that bounced off the top of the wall in left field. 

"I was pretty fired up to find out I was in the starting lineup," Moore said.  "To be able to start and play was all I was hoping for.  The home run tops it all off."

Moore gave the Tide a 1-0 lead in the second inning with an RBI ground out to score senior catcher Kody Valverde.  Junior shortstop Greg Paiml's safety squeeze bunt scored freshman RF Ryan Rhoden to give Alabama a 2-0 lead.

Bush swatted his first home run of the season in the third inning and Moore's single to left field plated Valverde as the Tide took a 4-0 lead. 

Alabama extended its lead to 5-0 in the fourth inning when Bush walked and later scored when he stole home on a double steal. 

Samford (0-1) scored three unearned runs in the fifth inning to chase UA starter Miers Quigley, who took a perfect game into the fourth inning and no-hitter into the fifth in his Crimson Tide debut.   Bear Burnett scored on a error by Paiml and John Morgan and Michael Maresco added RBI singles with two outs to make it a 5-3 game.

Junior Jake McCarter came into the game in the fifth in relief of Quigley and threw 4 1/3 shutout innings in relief for his win in his collegiate debut.  He allowed four hits and struck out five batters.

Alabama broke the game open with a five-run, sixth inning to take an 10-3 lead.  Bush plated two runs with a triple to left field and then scored on freshman 3B Alex Avila's sacrifice fly.  Moore added a two-run home run to cap the inning.

"Kyle Moore swung the bat really well," Wells added.  "I am really happy for him.  He got a shot tonight and took advantage of it."

The Crimson Tide added one more run in the seventh when junior CF Emeel Salem doubled and scored on Bush's single up the middle.

Alabama returns to action this weekend as they host Kent State in three-game series at the Joe beginning Friday, Feb. 17 at 6:30 p.m.

*Alabama used five more first-time players in its win over Samford to bring its season total to 14 first-time players.  True freshman LHP Miers Quigley (Roswell, Ga.) made his first career start on the mound, while redshirt Kyle Moore (Wetumpka) made his first career start as the designated hitter.  Junior RHP Jake McCarter (Kerrville, Texas) and threw 4 1/3 scoreless innings of relief for the win.  Redshirt freshman Wes Henderson (Oxford) and true freshman Jeff Texada (New Iberia, La.) made their debuts as pinch-hitters late in the game.

*Quigley opened the game by retiring the first 11 Samford batters he faced.  He lost his perfect game when he issued a two-out walk to Trey Moody in the fourth inning.  Quigley lost his no-hitter when Bear Burnett led off the fifth inning with a bunt single.  He could not pitch around an error as Samford scored three runs on four hits in the fifth and chased Quigley (4.2 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 0 ER, BB, 5 K) from the game with two outs in the inning. 

*Moore went 2-for-4 in his Crimson Tide debut, with one home run and four RBI.  He had an RBI ground out in his first at-bat and added an RBI single in his second at-bat Tuesday night.  He added a two-run home run in the Tide's five-run, sixth inning.

*McCarter earned the win in his debut with 4 1/3 scoreless innings of relief.  He allowed four hits and struck out five in his debut. 

*The Alabama bullpen has thrown 14 2/3 consecutive scoreless innings, dating back to the sixth inning of Sunday's win over Winthrop.

*Bush was 3-for-4 with a home run and four RBI in the win over Samford.  He hit his 25th career home run to give Alabama a 3-0 lead in the third inning.  Bush has hit safely in all four games this season.

*Valverde reached base all four times in the win over Samford, with three walks and hit by pitch.

*Salem has a four-game hitting streak this season and eight in-a-row dating back to last year.

*Alabama has hit five home runs in its first four games of the season.  The Crimson Tide did not hit its first home run of the season last year until Feb. 19, its seventh game of the year.