LSU baseball blows four-run lead late, gets walked off by Alabama

Tommy White belted a homer to make up for an early mistake in LSU's narrow loss to Alabama. PHOTO BY: LSU Athletics

It looked like LSU had the game.

It lead Alabama 7-3 heading into the bottom of the eighth inning, but the Tigers would allow five runs over the next two innings to drop the game 8-7. The walk-off run was scored on an error and was the only lead of the night for the Tide.

LSU (32-19, 9-16 SEC) now needs two wins in a row over Alabama (31-18, 11-14 SEC) to head back home with a fourth consecutive SEC series win and a shot at the postseason.

“It’s tough, but we have an opportunity to respond,” LSU head coach Jay Johnson said. “How our team responds is far more important than the results of any game. Their readiness, their toughness, their purpose tomorrow will be elite if they’ve really grown into men as this season has gone along.”

LSU took an early lead in the game thank to a solo shot homer from Jones, his 22nd of the season. Jones was one of the stars of the show for the Tigers. He finished with three hits, a walk and two doubles to go along with his homer.

Alabama would tie things up in the bottom of the second thanks to a triple from William Hamiter that nearly left the ballpark. Paxton Kling went back to the wall to try and catch it, but it careened past his glove an into the wall to bring home a runner.

LSU jumped back out in front in the fourth innings. Ashton Larson was hit by a pitch with two outs gone before Michael Braswell III singled. RBI singles from Steven Milam and Kling brought Larson and Braswell home to give the Tigers a 3-1 lead.

Alabama responded in the bottom of the inning with two runs of its own. Will Hodo started the inning with a double and advanced to third on a groundout before being brought home on a sac fly. Hamiter recorded his second RBI of the game with a single that knotted the game up at 3-3.

White homered to lead off the fifth inning to make up for an earlier mistake. He had reached base on a walk in the third inning and Jared Jones hit what would’ve been his second RBI of the game to bring him home and break a 1-1 deadlock.

But when he was rounding the bases, White missed the third base bag. Alabama appealed and the run was wiped off the board and the inning was over. His homer in the fifth gave LSU a lead it wouldn’t relinquish until the bottom of the ninth.

After White’s homer in the fifth to put LSU out in front, Jones doubled down the left field line and advanced to third on a groundout before Alabama pulled its started Greg Farone. Farone allowed seven hits and five runs in his 4.1 innings pitched.

Hayden Travinski hit a sac fly off Alabama reliever Austin Morris to score Jones and bring the lead to 5-3. Larson singled and Braswell doubled to put runners on second and third, but a strikeout ended the threat.

Gage Jump was relieved by Christian Little with a runner on second and two outs gone in the sixth inning. Jump allowed seven hits and three earned runs to go along with seven strikeouts in 5.2 innings pitched.

LSU added to its lead again in the eighth inning with its third solo homer of the game, this time from Milam. Milam had a good day at the plate and finished with two hits and two RBI. The homer brought the lead to three runs.

Kling was hit by a pitch after the homer and advanced to second on a sac bunt from Alex Milazzo. White came up to bat and hit an RBI double to score Kling and bring the score to 7-3. White finished the day with two hits, a walk and two RBI.

LSU let the Tide back into the game in the bottom of the eighth though. A single put a runner on base before a homer from TJ McCants cut the lead to 7-5. LSU turned to Griffin Herring who struck out two batters before allowing an RBI single to make it a one run game. A pop out ended the inning.

Herring came back out in the bottom of the ninth and struck out the first two batters before giving up a walk to put the tying run on base. McCants, who had three RBI and a homer in the game, was the next batter Herring would face.

Herring walked him to put the winning run on base. He hit the next batter to load the bases and put the winning run in scoring position with two outs gone. A throwing error down to first base scored two runs and ended the game.

LSU and Alabama will meet in game two tomorrow at 4 p.m. It will be streamed on SEC Network +.

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Will Nickel

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