by: Alex Chasen
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – After a 10-2 win against Troy University on Tuesday night, the (22-8, 3-6 SEC) Crimson Tide could not start this weekend’s home series against SEC opponent the (17-13, 1-8 SEC) Mississippi State Bulldogs off with a win, losing 12-8.
Opening up the ball game, Mississippi State jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead. Their bats immediately showed dominance over Alabama starting pitcher Garrett McMillan, getting pulled just after one inning on the mound.
The Tide threw the Bulldogs all they had, putting six different pitchers on the bump but none seemed to slow down the Mississippi State hitters.
Head Coach Brad Bohannon on Alabama’s pitching struggles tonight.
“They’re (Mississippi State) a really good offensive team…, they’re very similar to us offensively if you look at the numbers…, it’s a physical lineup. You got to really execute pitches against them…, coming out of the bullpen we have some guys that have better stuff but maybe they don’t command it as well, or maybe they’re young and against Mississippi State I think they showed you that you better have some stuff,” Bohannon said.
Alabama struck back in the second and third innings, starting off with an RBI single by Tommy Seidl followed by a home run party in the third inning. Back-to-back homers from Jim Jarvis followed by William Hamiter tied the game up 3-3.
In the top of the seventh inning, the Bulldogs had a home run party of their own, getting six runs across the plate off of three shots over the wall.
Bulldogs catcher Ross Highfill led their air raid at the plate with two home runs and four RBIs, going three for five at the plate.
Trailing 12-5 heading into the bottom of the ninth, Alabama didn’t go down without giving Mississippi State some problems, scoring three runs with two outs before Colby Shelton grounded out to end the game.
Coach Bohannon discussed his team’s fight in the final inning.
” Our guys keep playing, we scored in five of the innings which is obviously a real positive…, it’s a real even-keeled group. We preach all the time just go play and they did a good job with that, that was beneficial early in the game down 2-0 then tied it up and even when we were down big late they just kept playing…, typically over time that’s a real positive attribute for a team,” Bohannon said.
With the loss tonight, the Tide fall to (22-9, 3-7 SEC) while the Bulldogs improve to (18-13, 2-8 SEC). Alabama still has much to prove against SEC opponents, they are yet to win a conference series this season, losing the previous three series two games to one.
The Tide continue this three-game Easter weekend home series against the Mississippi State Bulldogs Friday mid-day followed by the series finale on Saturday. Friday’s first pitch is set for 12 p.m. CT.