Baseball Falls to Alabama in Game 2, 6-1
BATON ROUGE, La. – The LSU baseball team fell to Alabama by a score of 6-1 in Game 2 of the SEC series Saturday night in Alex Box Stadium.
With the loss, LSU drops to 30-21 overall and 13-13 in SEC play. Alabama improves to 26-26 overall and 7-19 in the SEC.
Game 3 of the series will begin at 2 p.m. CT Sunday, and it can be heard on affiliates of the LSU Sports Radio Network. The game may also be viewed on SEC Network +, accessible at WatchESPN.com and the Watch ESPN app.
LSU right-hander pitcher Ma’Khail Hilliard (8-4) was charged with the loss, surrendering five runs on four hits in three innings. Hilliard walked five and struck out one, throwing 75 pitches.
“I certainly didn’t anticipate that the game would turn out this way,” said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. “I thought we were ready to play, but it just wasn’t in the cards for us tonight. For one of the few times this year, Ma’Khail didn’t have good fastball command, and without that command, he wasn’t able to get ahead of hitters and use his curveball. It was just a tough outing for the young man, and no one feels worse that he does. He felt so bad, but I told him he just has to shake it off and get ready to pitch next week for us against Auburn.
“It’s a team sport, and a single player doesn’t win or lose the game. We’ve got to move forward and come back on Sunday to play another very important ball game.”
Alabama right-hander Jake Waters (3-5) earned the win, limiting LSU to one run on four hits in eight innings. Walters fired 102 pitches in the outing and recorded three walks and three strikeouts.
Alabama took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning when designated hitter Kyle Kaufman hit a sac-fly that drove in first baseman John Trousdale. With two outs in the second inning, third baseman Cobie Vance homered to left field, scoring shortstop Jett Manning to give Alabama a 3-0 lead.
With the bases loaded in the second inning, Hilliard hit leftfielder Keith Holcombe with a pitch, driving in another run and increasing Alabama’s lead to 4-0.
In the top of the third, Kaufman walked and advanced to second on a ground out. Vance singled through the left side to score Kaufman and extend the margin to 5-0.
LSU right-hander Cam Sanders worked 3.2 innings in relief of Hilliard and allowed one run on two hits with seven strikeouts.
Alabama scored its only run off of Sanders in the seventh when centerfielder Walker McCleney walked, stole second and crossed home after rightfielder Joe Breaux singled to center field.