Alabama baseball loses first 2013 game but wins road series

It was Florida Atlantic that, a little over one year ago, swept Alabama in the opening series, sending the Crimson Tide to its first 0-3 record since 1960. Now, Alabama won two of three against the Owls in a return trip to Boca Raton. Alabama won the first two games 5-2 and 4-2 before having its sweep bid ended by a 3-0 loss.

In the series opening game, Alabama lead-off hitter and center fielder Georgie Salem was 3-5 from the plate with one RBI and one run scored. Salem also stole a base, as did left fielder Ryan Blanchard and third baseman Kenny Roberts. Tucker Hawley got the win for the Tide, pitching two innings of no-hit relief with only one walk in place of starting pitcher Charley Sullivan.

In the second game, it was again Salem who led the pack, hitting 3-4. Designated hitter Austen Smith also added two hits for the Tide. Alabama starting pitcher Jon Keller pitched six innings, giving up four hits and no earned runs. Keller struck out five batters and walked three.

In the series-ending defeat, Florida Atlantic starting pitcher Jeremy Strawn pitched eight innings of shutout baseball, allowing only four hits while striking out eight batters and not walking a single batter.

The Crimson Tide will host Samford on Tuesday night before hosting Tulane for a three-game weekend series at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.

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