Alabama/Houston baseball notes

For the 16th time in school history and the eighth time in nine years under coach Jim Wells, the No. 23 ranked Alabama Crimson Tide will be playing in the NCAA Regionals. <br><br>The No. 2 seed Crimson Tide will open the four-team, double-elimination tournament in College Station, Texas, on Friday, May 30 at 2 p.m. (CT) against the No. 3 seed Houston Cougars.

Alabama and UH have met once already this season with the Cougars posting a 7-2 win at the Minute Maid Park College Classic in Houston on Feb. 15.

Alabama earned its second straight automatic bid to the NCAA Regionals by winning the SEC Tournament last weekend in nearby Hoover, Ala. The Crimson Tide posted four straight wins over No. 2 seed South Carolina, No. 3 seed Auburn (twice) and No. 1 seed LSU to earn its seventh overall title and sixth under Wells. The four Alabama games drew 46,850 fans (11,713 average) and the Crimson Tide's 7-5 win over Auburn on May 23 attracted the second-largest crowd (14,427) in SEC Tournament history.

The Records

Alabama (37-22, SEC Trny Champs) enters the NCAA Regionals riding a four-game winning streak and has won five of its last six games. Houston (32-27, 1-2 CUSA Trny) has lost eight of its last 15 games since April 27th.

The Coaches

Alabama's Jim Wells is in his ninth season at the Capstone, compiling a 408-174 (.701) record at the helm of the Crimson Tide. Overall, Wells is 600-262 (.696) in his 14th season as a Division I head coach. The 2002 SEC "Coach of the Year" has led the Crimson Tide to six SEC Tournament Championships (1995, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2002 and 2003).

Houston head coach Rayner Noble has compiled a 326-221 (.596) record in nine years at UH.

Tidebits

  • Bama will be looking to avenge a regular-season loss to the Cougars this Friday in Aggieland...
  • UH won 7-2 in the first meeting this year on Feb. 15...
  • All four of UA's post-season wins thus far have come against teams that beat the Crimson Tide in the regular season...
  • SS Adam Pavkovich has 26 doubles this year, which is a record for UA shortstops and the second-most in a season at UA...
  • RF Beau Hearod is the 5th player in school history to amass 80 RBI

Alabama-Houston Series

The Alabama-Houston series is tied 5-5 (.500) after the Cougars posted a 7-2 win over the Crimson Tide on Saturday, Feb. 15 at the 2003 Minute Maid Park College Classic in Houston.
  • The 2003 NCAA Tournament game will mark the second meeting of the year between Alabama and Houston. The Cougars claimed a 7-2 win over the Crimson Tide on Feb. 15 in second round action at the Minute Maid Park College Classic in Houston.
  • UH left-hander Danny Zell (7 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K) worked seven strong innings for the win over Alabama.
  • First baseman Brett Cooley (4-for-5, HR, 4 RBI), who has missed the last three quarters of the season with a torn hamstring, hit one home run and drove in four runs.
  • Alabama left-hander Brent Carter (4.1 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 3 ER, BB, 4 K), who lasted just 4 1/3 innings on the mound, suffered the loss in his first start of the 2003 season.
  • Junior DH Brad Van Winkle, who is no longer on the Alabama team, had two of the Tide's six hits in the loss.
  • The 2003 NCAA tourney opener marks the fifth straight meeting between UA and UH in the state of Texas, with four of those five meeting coming in the city of Houston.
  • The Cougars hosted the Crimson Tide in a three-game set to open the 1999 season and won the final two games to take the three-game series.
  • In 1998, Alabama swept a three-game set from UH in Tuscaloosa.
  • The two schools first met in 1976 with both teams winning one game in Tuscaloosa.
  • UA and UH also met in the 1989 Diamond Club Classic in Mobile, with the Cougars posting an 8-4 win.

Houston Notebook

  • UH has compiled a 7-10 (.412) record against Top 30 clubs this season...
  • The Cougars are only 5-15 (.250) against the 2003 NCAA Tournament field...
  • The Cougars played at the 2003 Minute Maid Park College Classic, beating Alabama and losing to Baylor and Texas A&M...
  • Houston went 1-4 against Rice this season...
  • UH RHP Brad Sullivan and SS Michael Bourn are among the top college draft picks in a recent survey by Baseball America...
  • The Cougars average 5.1 runs and 9.4 hits per game this season...
  • UH has 82 stolen bases (108 SBA)

Houston Batting Leaders
Hyung Cho .356, 13 HR, 58 RBI
Travis Tully .342, 0 HR, 23 RBI
Michael Bourn .325, HR, 14 RBI, 20 SB

Houston Pitching Leaders
Ryan Wagner 33 G, 4-5, 2.07, 13 Saves
Brad Sullivan 18 G, 17 GS, 6-6, 2.58, 115.0 IP, 149 K
Danny Zell 16 G, 15 GS, 8-5, 3.64
Garrett Mock 16 G, 14 GS, 5-4, 4.24


BamaMag Top Stories