After being held to one run on eight hits by Arkansas in two losses on Saturday and Sunday, the Alabama baseball team came out swinging on Tuesday and defeated Troy 10-5. The game was played in the Pensacola Wahoos AA minor league park. Troy knocked the Tide out of the Tallahassee Regional of the NCAA Tournament last season. 'Bama is now 16-8 on the season, and remains 3-3 in the SEC.
Freshman Nick Eicholtz got the start for 'Bama and continued his outstanding pitching. Eicholtz had a shaky first inning, as Troy's lead off hitter Clay Holcomb took his fourth pitch of the game deep over the left field wall for a quick 1-0 lead. Eicholtz also walked two and struck out two in the first frame. After that hiccup, the Odessa, Florida native was dynamite, allowing only two harmless singles and two more walks in a 109 pitch, seven inning stint. Eicholtz struck out nine and only allowed the one run.
'Bama threatened in the first with a single by Mikey White and a walk to Kyle Overstreet, but couldn't bring the run across. However in the second a two out rally tallied three runs. Will Haynie walked and was followed by a single by Chance Vincent. Lead off hitter Georgie Salem stroked a triple to left center to score Haynie and Vincent. White, who had four hits, then singled Salem in for a 3-0 lead. In the third, 'Bama put the game away for all intents and purposes with four runs. Overstreet led off with a single, followed by a walk to Wade Wass and a single by Austen Smith. Freshman Casey Hughston then blasted a long grand slam over the right field fence. The home run was Hughston's third of the year, tying him with Smith for the team lead.
Eicholtz never really faced any danger in the second through the seventh innings, settling down and showing why he is so highly regarded. 'Bama added to the lead in the fourth after Mikey White doubled and was brought home by Wass' single. Smith followed with another single and Wass was caught in a run down and tagged out for the third out of the inning. The Tide got single runs in the sixth and seventh. White singled and scored on a double by Ben Moore. Smith doubled in the seventh and scored on a ground out by Haynie.
Eicholtz's night ended after seven innings and a comfortable 10-1 lead. Taylor Guilbeau replaced him and gave up three runs on four hits in the eighth inning. Freshman Thomas Burrows pitched the ninth inning and gave up one run on three singles and a sacrifice fly to end the game with a score if 10-5.
The game was a homecoming for Smith and Wass, as well as manager Phil Provost. All three prepped at Pensacola Catholic High School, and were happy and honored to be able to play in front of their home town friends and family.
>>. White was 4-5 with a double, RBI and two runs scored.
>>. Smith was 3-4 with a double and two runs scored.
>>. Hughston hit a grand slam and finished with four RBIs.
>>. Salem was 1-5 with his first career triple and two RBIs.
>>. Moore had a double and RBI.
>>. Wass was1-3 with a walk, RBI and a run scored.
>>. Vincent was 1-3 with an RBI and run scored.
>>. Overstreet was 1-3 with a walk and run scored
>>. Haynie had an RBI.
Every starter contributed something on offense as the team had 13 hits and drew three walks in a well rounded game up and down the line up. The team will need to continue that as SEC play kicks back up this weekend. 'Bama continues to be 13th in the 14 team SEC in on-base percentage.
Ole Miss comes to Tuscaloosa this weekend for a three game set. Friday's game is at 6:35 p.m., Saturday's at 6:05 p.m. and Sunday's third game is set for 1:05 p.m.The game Saturday will be televised on CSS.
The Tide will stick with their typical weekend rotation of Spencer Turnbull, Justin Kamplain and Jon Keller. The trio has been outstanding, with Turnbull allowing only one earned run all year.
Bama Baseball Fever, catch it!
Roll Tide Y 'all.
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