Alabama Beats South Carolina

Alabama used a eight run sixth inning to defeat nationally fifth-ranked South Carolina, 10-5, in a key Southeastern Confence baseball game Friday night. The game drew a crowd of 4,396 to Bama's Sewell-Thomas Stadium. in front of 4,396.

Alabama (24-19, 9-10 SEC) scored ten runs on ten hits highlighted by Kent Matthes' two hits and three RBI all in the sixth inning.

Tommy Hunter (5-3) picked up the win on the mound for the Tide, throwing seven innings allowing five runs on six hits and striking out four while walking five.

South Carolina struck for a run in the top of the first inning on a Trent Kline sacrifice fly scoring Travis Jones and giving the Gamecocks a 1-0 lead.

The Crimson Tide manufactured a run in the third to tie the game at one. Third baseman Jake Smith led the inning off with a walk and went to second on Greg Paiml's bunt single. Both runners advanced on catcher Kyle Moore's sacrifice bunt and Smith scored on Emeel Salem's sacrifice fly to right field.

Alex Avilla led off the bottom of the fourth inning with a towering homerun over the left field wall to give the Tide a 2-1 lead and has eighth homerun of the season.

Jones added a solo homerun in the top of the sixth inning for the Gamecocks to tie the score at two.

In the bottom of the sixth inning the Tide chased South Carolina starting pitcher Harris Honneycutt (7-3) from the game and added eight runs. Alex Avila and Kent Matthes led the off the inning with singles, followed by a Matt Bentley walk. Brandon May picked up two RBI scoring Avila and Matthes on a bases loaded single up the middle. Smith laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt moving both runners into scoring position. Paiml singled in Bently and Moore laid down his second sacrifice bunt of the game to score May.

Salem added a single up the middle scoring Paiml, followed by a Belcher double and Avila was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Matthes cleared the bases with his second hit of the inning, a bases loaded double scoring Paiml, Belcher and Availa and giving the Tide a 10-2 lead.

South Carolina added a run in the top of the seventh on pinch hitter Robbie Grienstaff's bases loaded walk and Travis Jones was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded forcing in the second run of the inning. James Darnell followed with another bases loaded walk to score the third run of the inning for the Gamecocks.

Will Stroup relieved Hunter and picked up two outs and left the bases loaded in the seventh.

The Tide will return to action tomorrow with game two of the series with South Carolina with first pitch set for 4 p.m. CDT.

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