Bama Beats Auburn

Alabama pitcher Seth Johnson, a junior college transfer, got his first Southeastern Conference start for the Crimson Tide Saturday and pitched Bama to a 3-2 victory over Auburn in Auburn. The win evened the series at 1-1. The teams will battle in the rubber game at 1:30 p.m. CDT Sunday with Brent Carter pitching for Alabama.

Johnson ran his record to 4-0 with the victory. It was only his second start of the year. He allowed a single run in the first inning, then turned in a nine-strikeout performance, pitching into the eighth inning before being lifted for relief pitcher Brian Reed. Reed gave up a run in the ninth inning on a two-out, bases-loaded walk, but then got the final Auburn batter to ground out, earning his seventh save of the year.

Alabama is now 21-9 on the year and 6-5 in SEC play. The win ended a four-game losing streak for the Tide.

After Auburn scored a run in the bottom of the first inning, Beau Hearod tied the game for the Tide with a solo home run in the second inning. It was his 12th home run of the year. Hearod also scored the Tide's second run, coming home on a sacrifice fly by Brandon Avalos. Avalos, who had an emergency appendectomy just over a week ago, started in right field and extended his hitting streak to seven games ( those games have been spread over a couple of weeks).

Still, Alabama would need one more run for the victory. In the top of the ninth inning Zac Welch delivered a pinch-hit, two-strike RBI singles to get that third run home. It proved to be the winning marker. Alabama's second and third runs were helped by Auburn errors.

Bama third baseman Evan Bush played a big role in the win as he made an excellent play to cut down an Auburn runner at the plate in the eighth inning.


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