March 21, 2008
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Sophomore southpaw Mike Minor struck out a career-high batters in a complete game 2-1 win over Alabama Friday night at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.
Vanderbilt improved to 14-4 overall and 3-1 in the SEC, while Alabama dropped to 9-11 and 0-4 in league play.
Minor (3-1) struck out a career best 12 batters while allowing just an unearned run on eight hits in his second complete game of the season.
"Mike was a bulldog tonight," said senior catcher Shea Robin who led the Commodores with two hits on the night. "He was consistently pounding the zone and hitting his spots."
Alabama took a 1-0 lead in the third on a RBI single by Ross Wilson. The run was unearned as Alex Kubal, who scored, was picked off trying to steal second but shortstop Ryan Flaherty could not handle the throw from first base allowing Kubal to advance.
Vanderbilt took the lead with two runs in the fifth. Robin and Parker Hanks both singled to start the inning and Brian Harris was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Robin scored on a wild pitch by Alabama starter Austin Hyatt and Ryan Flaherty added a sacrifice fly RBI to score Parker Hanks for the go ahead run.
Alabama had one last threat in the sixth with consecutive singles by Josh Rutledge and Ross Wilson to start the inning. Alex Avila smashed a shot to first that Andrew Giobbi snagged to get him out at first. An intentional walk to Brandon May loaded the bases, but Minor got Matt Bentley to strikeout and Kent Mathes to fly out to left to end the inning.
Hyatt also went the distance for Alabama, giving up two runs on seven hits with six strikeouts and a walk to drop to 2-2.
Rutledge, Wilson and May led the Tide with two hits apiece.
The teams will play the second game of the series tomorrow afternoon at 4 p.m. Freshman Caleb Cotham (3-0, 1.96 ERA) will throw for VU, while Alabama will counter with sophomore Austin Graham (1-1, 2.76 ERA).
Vanderbilt 000 020 000 -2 7 1
Alabama 001 000 000 -1 8 0
Minor and Robin. Hyatt and Sharp. W- Minor 3-1, L- Hyatt 2-2. Sv- None HR: None.