Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Alabama baseball defeats Alabama State 12-0 after powerful two innings

Courtesy of UA Athletics
Alabama baseball player Matthew Heiberger (40) pitches the ball against Alabama State at Sewell-Thomas Stadium in Tuscaloosa, AL on Wednesday, Feb 21, 2024.

Alabama defeated the Alabama State Hornets 12-0 in seven innings, run-ruling the Hornets, thanks to explosive offense in the bottoms of the fourth and fifth innings, Wednesday afternoon at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.  

“We did enough tonight,” head coach Rob Vaughn said after the victory. “There’s a lot of things to be excited about with him and all of our young players.” 

Making his first start in the rotation, freshman left-hander Zane Adams got the nod for the Crimson Tide. The Texas native saw action versus Manhattan out of the bullpen and moved into the rotation to start Wednesday.   

The Crimson Tide offense got on the board first, breaking the deadlock in the fourth inning to put up seven runs on the Hornets.  

Alabama’s big inning started with a bases-loaded walk; with only one out, catcher Kameron Guangorena drew the free pass, scoring first baseman Will Hodo. Shortstop Bryce Eblin kept the line rolling with an RBI single into center field scoring right fielder Evan Sleight. Still with one out in the inning, third baseman Gage Miller recorded a single into center field, bringing home the designated hitter William Hamiter.  

With the bases still loaded, center fielder TJ McCants kept his hot bat alive with a grand slam into right field that cleared the bases, scoring Miller, Eblin and Guangorena and putting the Crimson Tide up 7-0.  

In the top of the fifth inning, Adams exited the game and was replaced by southpaw Matthew Heiberger. In his four innings of work, Adams pitched a gem, allowing only one hit while striking out two and surrendering only two free passes. 

“Obviously I was a little bit nervous. I tend to thrive whenever I get a bit nervous,” Adams said when asked about his first collegiate start. But, he added, he’s “just excited for the next one.” 

In the bottom of the fifth, Eblin turned on one and ripped a single into right field, bringing in his third RBI of the night and scoring second baseman Justin Lebron and Hamiter, who reached on a hit by pitch and walk, making it 9-0. Thinking on his feet, Guangorena took advantage of a passed ball, scoring from third to put Alabama ahead 10. 

Once again, McCants stole the show at the plate, recording his sixth RBI of the night. On a single back up the middle, Miller and Eblin came home to score, putting the Crimson Tide ahead with a commanding 12-0 lead.  

“I’m just trying to hit the ball. That’s all,” McCants said of his offensive performance. “Stay within the zone, laying off pitches outside, and getting the barrel to the ball.”  

The Alabama pitching staff saw Heiberger, right-hander Pierce George and left-hander Jansen Kenty all work one inning a piece out of the Crimson Tide bullpen. They allowed only three hits as a group and shut out the Hornet bats. Kenty secured the last three outs for the Crimson Tide to win the game. 

Alabama will next see the diamond on Friday, hosting the Valparaiso Beacons in a three-game weekend series at Sewell-Thomas Stadium. 

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