Baseball road woes continue

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- The University of Alabama baseball team (32-16, 13-11 SEC) could not pick up its first road series win of the season as Tennessee's seven runs in the middle innings of the rubber game proved enough as they took two out of three in the weekend series, winning 7-4 on Sunday.

Tennessee (27-21, 10-14 SEC) got on the board for the first time in the bottom of the fourth inning on three hits and an error as Nick Crowe and Walter Sevilla each had an RBI single after an error by second baseman Allen Rice.

The Vols were able to put up two more in the fifth, taking a 7-3 lead as Jordan Czarniecki drove in Alex Suarez with a fielder's choice and then scored on Josh Alley's RBI single. Tennessee would chase Sunday starter Seth Johnson from the game in the sixth inning when Suarez tripled, driving in two runs after the first two batters in the inning reached base safely. Suarez then scored on a sacrifice fly by Brian Cleveland.

Johnson went five-plus innings giving up seven hits and seven runs (four earned), while recording five strikeouts and two walks. His record dropped to 6-3 on the year with the loss Sunday. Brian Reed worked three innings in relief giving up just three hits and no runs.

Alabama took advantage of Tennessee errors for their first two runs of the game. The Crimson Tide (32-16, 9-15 SEC) opened the game by loading the bases with two singles and a walk before Zac Welch's soft single to right field scored Garner for the Tide's first inning run. Crowe limited the damage, however, with a strikeout and a double-play ball to end the threat.

In the third inning, Alabama got a run without a hit as Garner was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. Pavkovich's ground-out advanced Garner to second and he scored after two infield errors by the Vols. Garner scored his third run of the day on a Pavkovich sacrifice fly after tripling to lead off the seventh inning. Garner scored three runs on the day and went two-for-three at the plate. He was also hit by a pitch and walked. Bama scored one run each in the sixth and seventh inning.

Vol starter Brandon Crowe got the win on six and one third innings of work. He allowed eight hits and four runs (two earned) while striking out three and issuing one walk. He upped his record to 4-1 on the year. Luke Hochevar earned a save for Tennessee, his third of the season.

The Tide's next action will be Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. CST as they host Birmingham Southern at "The Joe".

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