HOOVER, Ala. – Despite a near sellout at the Met, Alabama lost off a walk-off homer in the bottom of the eleventh inning to Florida, 7-6.
Josh Rivera took Luke Holman deep to start the game for the Gators to put Alabama down 2-0 early in the first.
“I learned from the 3-2 slider I threw in the first inning and went pitch by pitch and settled in,” said Holman.
After the adjustment, Holman was able to give the Crimson Tide 5.2 innings on 101 pitches with five strikeouts.
Bama’s bats bounced back nicely in the middle innings, as the Tide were able to score one run in the fourth, fifth and sixth innings. Colby Shelton recorded two of those RBI on a two out single in the fourth and a no doubt home run to right, which was his 22nd on the season. Jim Jarvis also hit a sacrifice fly.
The Tide had a lead late, but the Gators chomped back and scored on a throwing error by Aidan Moza to tie the game. Florida had two runners in scoring position with one out and the top guys due up and Moza shut them down with back-to-back strikeouts, which caused the Met to roar.
In extras, both teams had chances to score early, but the fireworks came in the eleventh where Tommy Seidl had a two out bases clearing double to give Bama a three run lead.
“Baseball is a game of winning moments and we won the moment in the top half and they got us back in the bottom half and it is just about staying even keeled as you can throughout those moments,” Seidl said about the emotional rollercoaster the team went through in extras.
At this point, Alabama essentially had the win in their pocket, but Florida had other plans in the bottom half of the eleventh.
The Gators forced Bama into the bullpen to bring in Alton Davis for his second save in consecutive days. BT Riopelle – who was 0-4 entering the at bat had an 0-2 fastball and took it deep to give Florida the win.
“It was the plan all along to keep Moza in against Langford instead of going to Davis right away,” Interim Coach Jason Jackson said on the decision to not go with Davis to start the inning.
Despite being responsible for two earned runs, Moza had one of his best outings of the season – going 4.1 innings with four punchouts on 59 pitches.
“It was a kick to the gut, but the score resets tomorrow and we have to be ready,” Jackson said.
Alabama looks to bounce back tomorrow at 1 p.m. CST. Their opponent is TBD. Garrett McMillan will have the ball for the Tide.