PREVIEW: Alabama Baseball Hosts Louisiana Monroe
The Crimson Tide (3-5) is set to host a series against the University of Louisiana Monroe (4-5) entering the first weekend of March. All games will air live on Tide 102.9 and 100.9 FM.
Friday night, the Crimson Tide will have a shot at redemption after losing four straight. The most recent loss was handed to them on Tuesday, when the Tide gave up a run on pitching errors in the 10th to Jacksonville State, ultimately falling 2-1.
Chandler Avant and Cobie Vance led the Tide offensively Tuesday. Avant was 3-for-4 on the night, matching his career high for hits, while adding a double and a run scored. Vance finished 2-for-4 with one RBI to extend his hitting streak to eight straight games.
Head coach Greg Goff will continue searching for the right combination. On Tuesday, a total of 23 players found playing time. Goff's trend so far has been to play match up baseball - righty-lefty, lefty-righty - as much as possible. The Tide has been plagued with leaving runners on base, stranding seven while striking out seven times against Jacksonville State.
Louisiana Monroe will enter Sewell-Thomas Stadium coming off of a 14-5 loss to McNeese State on Wednesday night. The Warhawks drew national attention earlier this season the first time they faced McNeese State, losing by a score of 32-4. Louisiana Monroe has a .277 team batting average and a 6.75 team ERA.
Friday: Senior Nick Eicholtz (1-0) is most likely to lead the series off, hoping to earn his second win of the season. The first came in the opening game against Presbyterian College. In two games, Eicholtz has pitched nine innings allowing nine hits, given up five earned runs, earned seven strikeouts and walked one batter. Eicholtz has an ERA of 4.82
Saturday: Junior Jake Walters (1-1) will likely take the mound for the Tide. Walters earned his first win of the season, second for the Tide, against Presbyterian College with six innings of scoreless baseball while allowing three hits, walking one, and striking out seven. Righthanders were dominated, finishing 0-for-12 against Walters. His ERA stands at 3.97 this season.
Sunday: Sophomore Dylan Duarte will search for his first win for the season. The lefty has given up eight hits in nine innings of pitching, while earning six strikeouts and giving up three earned runs. Duarte's has an ERA of 2.79
Key players to watch:
Cobie Vance: The sophomore second baseman batting .515 with 17 hits on 33 at bats and has eight runs batted in. Vance seeking to extend his eight-game hitting streak and build on his team-leading batting average.
Chandler Avant: The junior short-stop is batting .394 with 13 hits on 33 at bats and has five runs batted in. The lead-off batter for the Tide leads the team in runs scored (7), tied for the team-high of three doubles and has the second-best batting average.
Chandler Taylor: The sophomore OF is batting .241 with seven hits on 29 at bats with eight runs batted in. Taylor leads the team in home runs (4) and slugging percentage (.759), while ranking second in runs scored with six. Taylor has hit home runs in back-to-back games and has added two multi-RBI games thus far to tie the team-high mark.
As a Reminder:
Game times will be 6 p.m. on Friday, 2 p.m on Saturday and 1 p.m. on Sunday. All games will air live on Tide 102.9 and 100.9 FM.