May 27, 2011 8:29:00 AM
HOOVER, Ala. -- Hudson Randall allowed four hits in eight innings Thursday to lead the third-seeded University of Florida baseball team to a 6-0 win against the University of Alabama in the second round of the 2011 Southeastern Conference tournament at Regions Park.
With the loss, Alabama falls to 33-25, while Florida improves to 43-15.
Alabama had five singles, as center fielder Taylor Dugas and designated hitter Brett Whitaker each had two hits. Josh Sanders was 1-for-3.
After a leadoff walk to Dugas to start the game, Randall allowed one hit in his first five innings to improve to 9-3.
Alabama starting pitcher Adam Morgan (5-6) took the loss, lasting 3 1/3 innings for his shortest outing of the season. He allowed five runs (four earned) on seven hits with a strikeout before giving way to Taylor Wolfe, who went 5 2/3 innings, allowing just one earned run on four hits with three strikeouts.
The Gators built a 2-0 lead after scoring a pair of runs off Morgan in the first. Bryson Smith smacked the first pitch to right-center field for a double and later scored on a groundout. Nolan Fontana scored on a sacrifice fly by Josh Adams for the second run.
The lead doubled to 4-0 in the second inning as Florida got runs on a RBI single by Smith and a sacrifice fly by Fontana.
"That''s a tremendous offense Florida has. One through nine they are very difficult to get out," Alabama coach Mitch Gaspard said. "As you can see, they are one of the best teams in the country and they really had their way today. It was a very dominate performance, they executed everything they put on. They played really well."
Florida added to its lead in the fourth inning with a RBI single by Smith that scored Daniel Pigott to make it 5-0. Smith''s single ended the day for Morgan, who had pitched six-plus innings in his past 11 starts, dating back to March 4.
Randall retired 12 straight before the Crimson Tide got back-to-back singles by Sanders and Dugas to open the sixth. Alabama''s best opportunity to get to Randall came to an end when Jared Reaves grounded into an inning-ending double play with runners on the corners. That was the only time Alabama got a runner to third base in the game.
Alabama will play No. 18 Arkansas at 3 p.m. today. Senior left-hander Jonathan Smart will start for the Crimson Tide, while freshman right-hander Ryne Stenek will go for the Razorbacks.
n Vanderbilt 7, South Carolina 2: The Commodores took advantage of a sloppy first inning by the Gamecocks to score two runs on one hit, then pulled way in the ninth.
South Carolina (45-13) will play Georgia today in an elimination game, while Vanderbilt (46-9) receives a third-round bye.
Vanderbilt used a combination of an Aaron Westlake double, a walk, a hit batter, an error and a passed ball to take a 2-0 first-inning lead.
The Commodores led 3-2 lead in the seventh, then got out of bases-loaded jam when Scott Wingo grounded out to shortstop. The Gamecocks also stranded two runners in the eighth.
Vanderbilt broke open the game with four runs in the ninth.
Sonny Gray (10-3) picked up the victory, while Forrest Koumas (6-1) took the loss.
South Carolina catcher Brady Thomas left the game after reaggravating an ankle injury in the first.
The game was delayed for 16 minutes in the third when about half the stadium lights went out.
n In related news, Vanderbilt freshman T.J. Pecoraro will miss the rest of the season after hurting his right pitching arm in the Commodores'' opening game of the SEC tournament.
Pecoraro left in the fourth inning of a 10-0 win against Georgia on Wednesday night with discomfort in his forearm. He will be re-evaluated when the team returns to Nashville. The freshman from Dix Hills, N.Y., went 7-0 with a 1.59 ERA in 17 games with six starts.
n Georgia 3, Auburn 2: A throwing error by shortstop Casey McElroy allowed the Bulldogs to score two runs in a three-run sixth inning and rally for a comeback victory that eliminated the Tigers.
The loss left Auburn (29-29) with a non-winning record, meaning they are ineligible for the NCAA tournament. The win kept the NCAA tournament chances alive for the Bulldogs (29-29). They will play South Carolina today.
McElroy hit a fourth-inning home run to give Auburn a 1-0 lead. Tony Caldwell followed with a double and later scored on a Georgia error.
An RBI double by Zach Cone cut the lead to 2-1. McElroy''s error let Kyle Farmer and Cone score.
1. Howland excited to have Nebraska coming to Starkville COLLEGE SPORTS
2. Shorter smiling again as Tigers try to clinch district title HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
4. Heritage Academy focused on bounce-back effort HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS