Feb. 19, 2014
Box Score (PDF)
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The UAB baseball team scored three runs in the eighth inning to seal its 9-6 victory against Alabama A&M on Wednesday night at Regions Field. With the victory, the Blazers improve to 5-0 on the 2014 campaign, its best start to a season since 2004.
“I thought Alabama A&M played really well,” head coach Brian Shoop said. “We had our hands full today, for sure. I am proud of our guys to come back on multiple occasions. Two big innings late got it done today.”
UAB scored six runs in the final three innings, to rally for its sixth straight win, dating back to last season. Redshirt sophomore outfielder Griffin Gum had a team-best two RBI on the night and senior left-handed pitcher Turner Lee recorded the victory on the mound.
Redshirt senior right-handed pitcher Ben Bullard made his first appearance on the mound since 2012 on Wednesday night. Bullard went 3.1 innings, surrendered six hits, and allowed four runs, two of which were unearned.
“He has battled so far, it is a real swing of emotions,” stated Shoop. “I was encouraged. He wasn’t, but I was. He was on the mound and that is the first step. I was thrilled to have Bullard back out there and excited for him.”
UAB built an early 2-0 lead for Bullard in the second inning. Sophomores Mitch Williams and Adam Smith each registered an RBI in the frame to put the host team ahead.
Alabama A&M rebounded with five runs over the following three innings. UAB closed the Bulldogs’ advantage to 5-3 in the fifth inning off an RBI single from senior designated hitter Ryan Prinzing.
Once again, the visitors tacked on another run in the sixth inning, pushing their lead to 6-3. The Blazers struck in the bottom of the sixth, plating three runs to tie the game. First, sophomore infielder Evan Peterson crossed the plate off an error by the shortstop. Two batters later, Gum plated two runs with a single through the left side of the infield to knot the score.
With the score tied in the bottom of the eighth inning, UAB would push ahead for good. Junior outfielder Jeff Schalk hit an RBI single to put the squad ahead, 7-6. Senior outfielder Ivan De Jesus replicated Schalk’s efforts with an RBI single. Peterson then plated the final run, scoring Schalk off of a fielder’s choice.
The UAB baseball team will be back in action at Regions Field on Friday night when it opens its series against Youngstown State. First pitch is slated for 4 p.m.
Notes: The UAB baseball team now owns a 5-0 record, its best start to a season since 2004 … The squad has won six straight contests, dating back to last season … Redshirt sophomore outfielder Griffin had a career-best two RBI … Freshman right-handed pitcher Ronnie Smith made his first appearance in a Green and Gold uniform on Wednesday.
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