Bama Wins First of Sunday Doubleheader

After struggling to generate offense early in the season, the University of Alabama baseball team scored 12 runs on 14 hits, both season highs, en route to a 12-2 win over Florida International in the first game of a double header at Sewell-Thomas Stadium Sunday afternoon.

Box Score

Senior second baseman Evan Bush, senior catcher Kody Valverde, freshman DH Alex Avila and senior first baseman Spencer Pennington had two hits each and were a combined 8-for-16 in the win.

The Crimson Tide spotted the Golden Panthers a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Bryan Pullin led off with a single and scored on Luis Bautista's one-out single through the left side of the infield.

After Friday night's thriller, Alabama took all of the suspense out of Sunday's first game with its most productive inning of the season on offense. The Crimson Tide scored six runs on six hits to take a 6-1 lead.

The inning began with a walk by freshman right fielder Ryan Rhoden, followed by back-to-back singles by senior first baseman Spencer Pennington and sophomore left fielder Andrew Rodgers. Junior shortstop Greg Paiml reached on a fielder's choice to score Rhoden and tie the game at 1-1.

After junior center fielder Emeel Salem grounded out the Crimson Tide got four straight two-out hits to take a 6-1 lead. Senior third baseman Matt Downs singled up the middle to score two runs. Bush followed with an infield to chase Downs to third base. Valverde cleared the bases with a triple over the head of Pullin to scored Downs and Bush. Avila capped the inning with a single up the middle to score Valverde for the 6-1.

The six runs were more than enough for Tide starter Austin Graham, who notched his second straight win. Graham (2-1) allowed two runs and six hits in 6 2/3 innings, with two walks and two strikeouts.

FIU starter Frank Gonzalez (1-2) allowed six runs and seven hits in two innings to take the loss.

Alabama (7-3) padded its lead in the fifth when Avila doubled and scored on Paiml's two-out single through the left side of the infield to give the Tide a 7-1 lead.

The Crimson Tide made it an 8-1 game in the sixth inning when Rhoden's two-out base hit to center scored Valverde, who also reached on a two-out single.

The Golden Panthers (5-7) cut the margin to 8-2 in the seventh inning when Yosvel Barroso doubled and later scored on James McOwen's sac fly to left field.

Alabama added four runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to cap the scoring. Junior pinch-hitter Allen Ponder (Auburn) laced a two-run single up the middle to make it 10-2 and senior pinch-hitter David Ferazza (Hayward, Calif.) added a two-run home run to left to make the final score 12-2.

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