The No. 24 ranked University of Alabama baseball team shut out Mississippi Valley State, 10-0, to take the win Wednesday afternoon at Sewell-Thomas Stadium. The two wins against the Delta Devils completes the midweek sweep and leaves Alabama undefeated all-time against MVSU.
"The last two days were just what we needed to get back on track," UA head coach Mitch Gaspard said. "We had a real good outing by Adam Windsor to get five innings of hitless ball."
A solid start from sophomore lefty Adam Windsor (2-0), who made the first start of his Crimson Tide (23-13) career, helped guide Alabama to its 21st win at The Joe. Windsor carried a perfect game into the sixth inning before he was taken out. Windsor added one strikeout to his five innings of work, while throwing only 38 pitches, 32 of which went for strikes.
The Alabama offense exploded to help Windsor earn his first career win as a starter, scoring 10 runs on 13 hits. The one-through-four hitters, Brock Bennett (3), Jared Reaves (2) Taylor Dugas (2) and Austen Smith (2) all pitched in multi-hit games for the Tide. Bennett, batting leadoff for the first time in his career, went 3-for-3 with three runs while drawing one walk. Reaves also provided some offense for the Tide as well, going 2-for-3 with two runs and three RBI while walking once. The top four hitters were a combined 9-for-13, contributing seven runs while knocking in seven RBI and walking three times total.
"I'm pleased with the way we played the last two days," Gaspard added. "I thought we responded after a tough weekend and played solid baseball on all ends of the game the past couple of days."
Taylor Wolfe, Brett Whitaker, Josh Rosecrans and Jonathan Smart closed out the final four innings for the Tide to help secure the shutout. Rosecrans threw a perfect eighth inning, striking out the three batters he faced. Mississippi Valley State (13-21) starter Steven Barnes (4-4) took the loss.
Alabama opened the scoring in the bottom of the third. Bennett led off the inning with his second single of the game, and came around two batters later when Dugas hit his 11th career triple to send Bennett across. Dugas scored in the very next at-bat on a wild pitch, setting the score at 2-0 through three.
With the bases loaded in the bottom of the fourth, Jared Reaves smacked a bases-loaded double to left-center, plating all three runners and setting the Alabama lead at 5-0.
Bennett led off the sixth inning with his third single of the game. Following his leadoff single, Reaves was plunked by a pitch and the next batter, Dugas, slapped a single up the middle to bring Bennett home and send Reaves to third. Smith followed with a run-scoring hit of his own, a double down the left field line, to plate two more runs. Andrew Miller then slapped a single past a diving Delta Devil shortstop, adding another run and widening the Tide lead to 9-0.
The Tide scored their final run in the bottom of the eighth on an RBI single by Patrick McGavin. McGavin, who entered the game in place of Smith defensively in the seventh inning, plated Reaves who reached on a double to lead off the inning. The RBI was the first of McGavin's career at the Capstone.
Alabama hosts the Tennessee Volunteers for a three-game series beginning tomorrow at Sewell-Thomas Stadium. The Tide and Volunteers will kick off the first game of the series at 6:30 p.m. CT, with Friday's game kicking off at the same time. Saturday's series-ending game will begin at 5:05 p.m. CT. Friday's game will be aired live by ESPNU as part of the ESPNU Thursday Night SEC Baseball Game of the Week schedule. Alabama will start senior right-hander Nathan Kilcrease (4-2, 2.63 ERA) while Tennessee will counter with senior left-hander Rob Catapano (2-2, 3.49 ERA) for the opener tomorrow night.