April 16, 2014
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – The UAB baseball team jumped out to an early lead, but could not hold on as it lost 5-2 to No. 8 Alabama on Wednesday night at Regions Field. With the loss, UAB split its season series with in-state foe Alabama.
“From the sixth inning on, we had trouble getting them out and we had trouble generating runs,” head coach Brian Shoop said. “Alabama clearly deserved to win that game tonight.”
UAB (24-13, 10-5) was the first team to score for the 26th time this season, but could not preserve its early advantage. Alabama (26-11, 10-5) tallied three runs in the sixth inning and added two more in the eighth to secure its second win in the past seven meetings against the Blazers.
The Green and Gold used the same approach on the mound that they employed in its 2-1 win on Wednesday, April 9 against the Crimson Tide. Nine pitchers saw time on the mound on Wednesday night, but the plan was not as effective as it was prior. Alabama was able to record 13 hits and five runs in its victory. Redshirt freshman left-handed pitcher Adam Lamar was credited with the loss after giving up two runs in the sixth.
“We really had no choice,” added Shoop. “We don’t have that many and we have to have them ready for the weekend.”
A crowd of 3,067 showed up to watch the in-state matchup at Regions Field. It marked the largest crowd to witness a UAB home baseball game since April 2, 2008 against Alabama at the Hoover Metropolitan Stadium.
“This game draws a lot of interest and it is fun to play in front of a good crowd,” commented Shoop. “We are very appreciative of everybody that came out and very appreciative to play here at this incredible facility.”
UAB started the scoring with a one-run second inning. With one out, sophomore catcher Mitch Williams laced a single to right center. Senior designated hitter Ryan Prinzing followed that up with a hit to center, but Williams was caught on the base paths, resulting in a fielder’s choice. After a wild pitch put Prinzing on second, senior outfielder Ivan De Jesus hit an RBI single to plate Prinzing and give the host team a 1-0 edge.
Lamar was the fourth pitcher to enter in the sixth inning. The redshirt freshman allowed two Alabama singles before being replaced by sophomore right-handed pitcher Cory Eller. Eller followed up Lamar by giving up three consecutive singles, which resulted in three runs for the Crimson Tide.
Alabama extended its lead in the eighth inning, scoring two more runs off an RBI single and sacrifice fly. UAB recorded a run of its own in the bottom of the frame off a sacrifice fly from junior first baseman Jeff Schalk.
The UAB baseball team is back on the road when it takes on No. 14 Rice in a Conference USA three-game series this weekend. The series begins on Friday night at 6:30 in Houston, Texas.
Notes: The UAB baseball team is 18-8 when scoring the first run of the game … UAB lost only its second game in the past seven meetings with in-state foe Alabama … Wednesday night’s crowd of 3,067 was the largest crowd to watch a UAB home baseball game since April 2, 2008 … Junior first baseman Jeff Schalk recorded his sixth sacrifice fly of the year, which leads the team.
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