No. 14 Florida rallies past Alabama to win 10th consecutive SEC game
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Freshman A.J. Puk delivered the game-winning RBI single and earned the victory as No. 14 Florida came from behind to defeat No. 20 Alabama, 4-3, on Saturday.
With their 10th league win in a row, the Gators (32-15/17-6 SEC) secured their fourth consecutive series triumph and maintained their two-game advantage over No. 16 Ole Miss in the standings. Trailing by a run in the sixth, UF tied the game on a solo shot by Taylor Gushue and Puk moved the visitors in front with a base-hit that scored Peter Alonso.
Puk (4-2) worked 2.2 scoreless innings and was followed to the mound by Dane Dunning (2.2 IP, 1 H, 3 K) and Kirby Snead (inning-ending strikeout in the eighth) before Ryan Harris tossed a perfect ninth to collect his team-leading fifth save. The Gators notched their 13th one-run victory, the most in the country. The Crimson Tide fell to 30-17 overall and 13-10 in league action.
Florida opened the scoring in the third inning when Casey Turgeon (3-for-3, two walks) scored on a wild pitch from Justin Kamplain (4-3). Turgeon had drawn a one-out walk and moved to third base on a base-hit into right field by Richie Martin.
Alabama erupted for three runs on three hits in the bottom of the frame to take a 3-1 lead. Mikey White was hit by a pitch, Georgie Salem walked and Ben Moore bunted to load the bases with none out. Wade Wass had an RBI single into right field, a fielder’s choice by Austen Smith scored Salem and Kyle Overstreet (2-for-3) had an RBI single into left center to end the afternoon for Aaron Rhodes (2.1 IP, 4 H , 3 R). Puk notched a strikeout and freshman left fielder Ryan Larson gunned down Smith at the plate to complete the frame.
After Larson singled with one down in the fifth, Turgeon roped a double into right center to narrow the Gators’ deficit to 3-2. Kamplain induced consecutive fly-outs by Martin and Harrison Bader to keep the hosts ahead.
Gushue began the sixth with his team-leading fifth homer that slammed the scoreboard overlooking left center field. It was Gushue’s first dinger since April 5 at Kentucky. After Alonso walked and went to second on a wild pitch from Ray Castillo, Puk delivered an RBI single into left center to put the Gators on top, 4-3.