Nashville, Tenn, - Top-ranked Vanderbilt finished a series sweep of Alabama with an 11-6 win Sunday afternoon at Hawkins Field but it was not easy.
The Commodores scored six runs in the seventh inning with Curt Casali and Bryan Johns each hitting home runs in the rally to take a commanding 10-3 lead into the eighth inning. However, the Crimson Tide rallied for three runs before Tony Kemp's diving catch on the warning track with the bases loaded ended the three-run rally. Navery Moore then worked a scoreless ninth inning to send the Commodores to 30-3 overall and 10-2 in the Southeastern Conference.
Mike Yastrzemski led the Dores with three hits and three runs scored also driving in a run. Casali knocked in four runs in the win, including his three-run homer in the seventh inning. For Johns it was his first round tripper of the year. Anthony Gomez extended his hitting streak to 28 games with a first inning double and finished the day 2-for-4. Taylor Dugas went 3-for-5 with a home run to lead the Tide.
Corey Williams picked up the win in relief pitching 1.2 scoreless innings for Vanderbilt. Trey Pilkington was pinned with the loss for Alabama giving up one run on three hits over 3.1 innings. VU starter Taylor Hill gave up three runs on five hits in 4.1 innings of work.
The sweep is the first for Vanderbilt against Alabama since 1986 and the Commodores' eight-game SEC winning streak is the longest in school history. Sunday's attendance of 3,357 set a season-high for Hawkins Field for the third straight day and the series attendance of 9,616 is the second-most for a three-game series in school history.
The Dores hit the road for the first time in midweek action this season with a Tuesday trip to Middle Tennessee State. First pitch is slated for 6 p.m. at Reese Smith Field in Murfreesboro, Tenn. Vanderbilt plays at South Carolina next weekend with Friday's game scheduled for 6 p.m. CT, Saturday at 6 p.m. CT and Sunday at 12 p.m. CT. Saturday's contest will be televised on CSS and Sunday's on ESPN2.