The Commodores took a 5-0 lead in the first inning off three hits and three Alabama errors. Mike Baxter led off the game with a double and moved to third on a passed ball. Rucker Taylor reached base after being hit by a pitch. Baxter scored and Taylor moved to second on a wild pitch by Alabama starter Josh Copeland. Brian Hernandez then singled moving Taylor to third. Warner Jones singled to right center and moved to second on an error by Cale Iorg scoring Taylor. Copeland then left the game without recording an out and gave the ball to Brandon Belcher. Tony Mansolino reached on a throwing error by Iorg scoring Hernandez. Alex Feinberg drew a walk and stole second. Matt Zeller hit a sacrifice fly to center field scoring Mansolino for the 5-0 inning.
Vanderbilt added one run in the second inning after Taylor led off with a double and scored on a Jones sacrifice fly.
With the Commodores leading 6-0, Alabama scored four runs in the fifth to narrow the margin to two, 6-4. Charlie Lyons led off the inning reaching second on a throwing error by Taylor (shortstop). Allen Rice then pinch hit for Greg Paiml and grounded out to the shortstop moving Lyons to third. Cale Iorg then singled to the left side scoring Lyons. Emeel Salem reached on an error by Jones who tried to turn a double play. The Commodores recorded the second out of the inning when Stephen Shao took an Evan Bush single to left and threw Iorg out at home. With two away, Gabe Scott singled to the right and Salem scored when Hernandez did not stop the ball on the throw from right field. Matt Bentley then hit a double to right field scoring Bush and Scott for the four-run inning.
Vanderbilt answered with two runs in their half of the inning for a 8-4 lead. Jones led off with a single and Dominic De La Osa drew a walk. Both advanced when Feinberg laid a bunt to the pitcher. Stephen Shao then hit a two-RBI single up the middle scoring Jones and De La Osa. Antoan Richardson singled to left moving Shao to third. With two away and Baxter at the plate, Jordan Davis threw a pitch over the catcher’s head and Shao was thrown out at the plate to end the inning.
Alabama cut it to one (8-7) in the sixth inning on a two-out three-run home run by Bush off VU reliever Michael Wagner
With Jeff Sues on the mound for the Commodores in the eighth, Iorg was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. Salem struck out and Bush doubled to left field on the first pitch. Scott drew a walk loading the bases. With no outs, Bentley hit a sacrifice fly to left field scoring Iorg. Thomley doubled to right center scoring Scott and Bush giving Alabama its first lead of the game, 10-8.
Davis retired the side in the eighth and allowed just a single in the ninth to win his second game of the year. He went 5.0 innings and did not allow a run giving up six hits with two strikeouts.
Sues picked up the loss for Vanderbilt and is now 2-2 on the season. He gave up three runs on three hits and struck out three. Starter Matt Buschmann went 4.2 innings and allowed four runs (three earned) on six hits. He struck out five and walked two. Wagner went 1.1 innings giving up three runs on two hits and Shao pitched the final inning and did not give up a hit.
Both teams committed four errors in the game. Vanderbilt outhit Alabama 12-11 led by Baxter, Taylor, Jones and Shao with two each.
The Commodores host Jacksonville State Tuesday at 4 pm at Hawkins Field.
- Vanderbilt wins the series 2-1
- Tony Mansolino left the game after drawing a walk in the second inning with a slight muscle sprain in his side.
- It marks the second game a VU outfielder got an assist on putout at home. Stephen Shao threw out Cale Iorg in the fifth inning from left field.