Bama Can't Sweep South Carolina

The Alabama baseball team went for the sweep of South Carolina Sunday, looking to use the same come-from-behind script it had employed in the past two games. But the Tide missed it's best chance in the sixth inning, dropping the 5-2 decision at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.

Alabama dropped to 29-12 on the year, but maintained a one-game hold on first place in the Southeastern Conference with an 11-7 league record. LSU completed a sweep of Arkansas Sunday, and is at 10-8 in conference play.

"We certainly weren't happy with two wins, but their guy on the mound had a lot to do with that," Alabama Coach Jim Wells said. "Today they had a better starting guy than us and that happened to be the difference."

Zac McCamie pitched five and a third of no-hit baseball for the Gamecocks before running into trouble in the sixth inning.

Bama's Allen Rice and Gabe Scott finally broke on McCamie with back-to-back one-out singles in the sixth. Evan Bush, who struggled at the plate for the second game in a row, popped out to the second baseman before a bloop over the shortstop's head turned into a double for Morrow Thomley, scoring Rice on the play.

A walk issued to Zac Welch loaded the bases with two out, but Kody Valverde popped out in foul territory on a full count to end the Tide threat.

"As sharp as (McCamie) was through the majority of the game, he gave us some pitches to hit there. That was our shot," Wells said. "Good pitching will stop you and he pitched well enough for the better part of the game to stop us."

Alabama scored one run in the seventh inning when Cale Iorg singled and advance to third on a Greg Paiml soft single. Iorg scored on a sacrifice fly by Emeel Salem to make it a 4-2 game, but Allen Rice hit into a double play to end the rally.

Alabama got to McCamie again in the eighth inning with a single and a walk, but that brought on Brent Marsh, who retired the next six batters in order to close out the game.

Credit leadoff man Steven Tolleson and second-place hitter Michael Campbell for the bulk of South Carolina's offense. Tolleson swung at the first pitch he saw on his first three at-bats, coming away with a two singles and a solo home run. Campbell also had three hits in his first three plate appearances, two singles and an RBI triple.

Clean-up man Ryan Mahoney drove in two runs in this first two at-bats, one on a single and one on a ground-out that scored Campbell.

Bama starter Jordan Davis gave up four runs and nine hits in three and two thirds innings. Brent Carter pitched two and two thirds scoreless innings in relief and David Robertson gave up a run off two hits in two and two things.

The Crimson Tide is back in action Wednesday, April 27 as they host South Alabama at Sewell-Thomas Stadium at 6:30 p.m. Alabama returns to SEC action next weekend as they host the Georgia in three-game SEC series, beginning Friday, April 29 at 6:30 p.m. GAME NOTES:

*No. 15 Alabama took two of three from No. 8 South Carolina despite losing 5-2 in the series finale on Sunday afternoon.

*Alabama wrapped up a four-week stretch where they played four Top 10 teams. The Crimson Tide took two of three from No. 4 LSU (April 1-3), No. 9 Ole Miss (April 8-10) and No. 8 South Carolina (April 22-24). Bama dropped two games to No. 5 Florida (April 15-17).

*Alabama posted a 7-5 record against those four Top 10 teams. Overall, Alabama is 8-7 against ranked teams this season. The Crimson Tide played five of its first six SEC series against Top 25 teams.

*Following the South Carolina series, Alabama (29-13, 11-7 SEC) has as many wins this season as it did all of last year. The Crimson Tide's 11 SEC wins are one more than the team had in league play a year ago.

*Alabama maintains its lead in the SEC Western Division and moved into second place in the overall standings this weekend as No. 16 Tennessee dropped two games at Vanderbilt. Alabama and Tennessee do not play this season. Alabama owns a one game lead over LSU (10-8) and has a 1 1/2 game lead over Miss. State (9-8). The Crimson Tide has a two-game lead over Ole Miss (9-9) and a three-game lead over Auburn (8-10) and Arkansas (8-10).

*South Carolina RHP Zac McCamie pitched 5 1/3 no-hit innings in the win over Alabama on Sunday. Senior DH Allen Rice broke up the no-no with a one-out single in the sixth inning. McCamie allowed two runs and six hits in seven-plus innings for his eighth win of the year. He walked four and struck out six.

*Rice (1-for-4) broke up McCamie's no-hitter with a one-out single in the sixth inning. The base hit was Rice's 200th career hit at Alabama.

*Alabama junior RHP Jordan Davis made his first career start today for the Crimson Tide. He became the seventh different Sunday starting pitcher for Alabama this season. Davis struggled in his first career start as he allowed four runs and 10 hits in just 3 2/3 innings. He also added six strikeouts before exiting the game after a two-out single to Steven Tolleson in the fourth inning.

*Senior left-hander Brent Carter made his fifth appearance of the season out the bullpen in the loss to South Carolina. Carter worked 2 2/3 scoreless innings and allowed two hits, two walks and two strikeouts.

*Carter became just the second pitcher in Alabama history to record 300 career innings pitched. Carter has 301 career innings and joins Lance Cormier (1999-2002) as the only two UA pitchers with 300 innings. Cormier holds the UA career record with 381 innings pitched.

*Carter also made his 66th appearance on the mound to tie Jarrod Kingrey (1997-98) for sixth place on the school's all-time list.

*With two strikeouts against South Carolina, Carter now has 278 in his Alabama career. He is 11 strikeouts shy of the all-time record (289) held by Cormier.

*Freshman shortstop Cale Iorg (1-for-4) extended his hitting streak to a season-best nine games with a leadoff single in the seventh inning.

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