Bama Drops Sixth Straight in Loss to Jax State, 5-3


Tuesday, May 13, 2003

Beau Hearod

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TUSCALOOSA - Five Jacksonville State pitchers allowed just four hits as the Gamecocks (28-24) claimed a 5-3 win over Alabama (32-20) in the regular-season home finale for the Crimson Tide on Tuesday.

Jace Kreitner tossed a perfect third and fourth innings to earn the win and run his record to 3-2 on the season.  Bobby Wynns tossed the final inning to earn his fourth save of the season. Alabama's Jacob Legg (0-1) last just 1.0 inning, giving up four hits and three runs to suffer the loss.

Jax State has won five of the last six, while the Crimson Tide dropped their sixth straight game of the season, its longest losing streak since 1994.

Alabama jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning after Beau Hearod slugged a two-run homer over the right center field wall, his 19th home run of the season, off of Gamecock starter Danny Andres.

The Jennings, La., now has 40 career home runs and 198 RBI and is just two RBI away from becoming the fourth player in school history to record 200 hits, 40 home runs and 200 RBI.

Jax State fought back to take a 3-2 lead in the top of the second. Clint Carroll and Evan Conley led off with a single each. Legg then issued a pair of walks to Richard Turner and B.J. Burns, which scored Carroll and chased Legg from the game.  Matt Ruckdeschel followed with a RBI fielder's choice to score Turner and B.J. Burns scored on a throwing error for the Gamecocks.

The Gamecocks added a run in the top of the fourth inning after Richard Turner slapped his first-career home run to left field as JSU took a 4-2 lead.

Alabama came back in the bottom of the sixth inning to cut the lead to one run. Hearod reached after being hit by a pitch and then stole second. Brandon Avalos followed with a two-out RBI double to right center to score Hearod and cut the lead to 4-3.

Jacksonville State added an insurance run in the top of the eighth inning after Kerri Fair and Bobby Hicks led off with singles. Following a pair of strikeouts, Evan Conley followed with a two-out RBI double to right center to score Fair as the Gamecocks pushed the lead to 5-3.

The Crimson Tide managed only four hits in the loss and has only eight hits in last four games.  Senior center field Travis Garner, who has four of those eight hits, extended his hitting streak to 16 games with a fifth-inning single.

Alabama concludes the 2003 regular season at Miss. State this weekend in Starkville.  The Crimson Tide and Bulldogs open the series Friday night at 6:30 p.m.  The Crimson Tide faces a must-win situation in Starkville or miss the SEC Tournament for the second time in three years.

Jax State returns to action this weekend with a key three-game Atlantic Sun Conference series vs Georgia State. Friday's single-game is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. and Saturday's double-header will begin at 1 p.m. at Rudy Abbott Field.