In a back and forth game that saw eight lead changes, the Crimson Tide fell to instate opponent Troy by a score of 12-11 on Tuesday night. The Tied fell to 13-16 on the year and Troy improved to 15-12. The game drew a Riddle-Pace Field record attendance of 3,328, breaking the record the same two teams drew last year.
Freshman Deacon Medders drew the starting assignment for ‘Bama against the Trojans Corey Childress. Medders was staked to an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first when Kyle Kaufman singled and scored in front of a long blast off the bat of Hunter Alexander that barely stayed fair over the left field fence.
Troy took the lead in the third with three runs, all scored with the benefit of only one hit, a bunt single. Drew Frederic drew a lead off walk, and Steven Whitaker tried to lay down a sacrifice bunt, but beat it out for a hit. Matt Sanders also tried to sacrifice, but when Medders fielded it he threw the ball in to right field, allowing two runs to score and Sanders to reach third base. A Trevor Davis sacrifice fly brought home the go ahead run.
The Tide re took the lead in the fourth on another home run by Alexander, his fourth of the year, and another solo shot by Tanner DeVinny, also his fourth. After a walk and a double scored a run in the bottom of the fifth, Medders was replaced by Sam Finnerty. The first batter Finnerty faced hit a routine fly ball to left field, but left fielder Logan Carey never saw the ball and it fell in for a double, scoring the go ahead run, 5-4.
‘Bama recaptured the lead in the sixth on a walk, Alexander’s single and an error by the Trojans. Troy tallied four runs in the bottom of the sixth on an error, two walks and two hits, taking a 9-5 lead. The Tide answered with five runs in the top of the seventh on a two run double by Chandler Avant, an RBI single by Cobie Vance, a sacrifice fly by Cody Henry and a wild pitch.
The Tide added to the lead in the eighth with one run after a Connor Short single, Gene Wood double and a sacrifice fly from Avant. Mike Oczypok replaced Finnerty in the seventh and ran into trouble in the bottom of the eighth. The Trojans used a single, three walks (one intentional ) and a two run double to tie the game. Zac Rogers finished the inning on the mound with two strikeouts.
‘Bama loaded the bases in the top of the ninth with a Cobie Vance single and two walks with only one out, but a strikeout and ground ball ended the threat. Troy used the bunt to help beat the Tide in the bottom of the ninth. Frederic lead off with a single, and Whitaker again bunted to sacrifice, but beat it out. Sanders then lined a single to center bringing in the winning run.
Alexander was 3-4 with two home runs, a walk, and three runs driven in. Avant, a Troy native, was 2-4 with a double and three RBI and Vance was 2-5 with a RBI. The Tide had 11 hits, drew five walks and struck out four times, leaving six runners on base. The Trojans had 14 hits, had eight walks and struck out 12 times, with nine runners stranded on base.
The two teams were suppose to play a return game in Tuscaloosa tonight, but that game has already been scraped because of looming weather in T Town. The Tide travels to Oxford to play Ole Miss this weekend. Friday the game is at 6:30 p.m. CT and will be on SEC Network Plus-Watch ESPN App. Game two on Saturday is at 3 p.m. and also on SEC Network Plus. Sunday’s game is at 3 p.m. and will be on SEC Network.