SEC Baseball Tournament: Crimson Tide Falls to the Bulldogs, 4-1


The Tide is still alive for an SEC Baseball Tournament title, but they will have to come out of the losing bracket after a 4-1 loss to the top-seeded Mississippi State Bulldogs.

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There is no way to dress this one up to make it look pretty. Mississippi State righty Zac Houston almost went the distance (8.2 IP) in the game while striking out five for the day. Houston held the Tide to four hits (two in the last frame) and one earned run. Blake Smith came in for the final out, striking out Will Haynie for his fourth save.

Tide starter Geoffrey Bramblett gave up three hits in the bottom of the first and allowed the Bulldogs to jump out to the early 1-0 lead. Jake Mangum and Jack Kruger led things off for Mississippi State with two singles up the middle. With two away, Gavin Collins placed his effort into left field for an RBI single to plate the run.

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Mississippi State added another run to cushion their lead during the third. John Holland planted a lead-off single into right field and quickly stole second. The umpires awarded him third base during the play with Daniel Cucjen getting in his base path while going for the dropped ball on the steal. Mangum grounded out which allowed Holland to come in and give the Bulldogs the 2-0 lead.

Collins came up big for the Bulldogs once again in the fourth, cranking the 2-2 offering over the left field wall to extend Mississippi State’s lead to 3-0.

The Bulldogs pulled away a bit more from the Tide during the sixth, making the score 4-0. Collins hammered a single to left field and stood at third after a sacrifice bunt and a passed ball. Brent Rooker drove him in with an RBI single to left. Bramblett’s day was over with one out to go in the frame after giving up nine hits, four earned runs, and notching four strikeouts. Sam Finnerty finished up the night for the Tide, allowing three hits for no runs and one walk.

The Crimson Tide almost put one on the board in the eighth, but Reid Humphreys made a leaping catch at the wall in left to rob Chance Vincent of a home run. The Tide did add one run in the ninth with an RBI double from Chandler Taylor to make the final of 4-1.

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The Crimson Tide will take on the loser of tonight’s game with LSU and Florida. First pitch is set for 30 minutes after the completion of the first game in the morning.