Vandy rolls over Tide

HOOVER, Ala. – No. 9 Vanderbilt exploded for 16 runs on 19 hits in a 16-1 victory in seven innings to eliminate Alabama Friday afternoon at the Hoover Met in the SEC Tournament.

The Commodores (41-18) took a 2-1 lead into the fourth inning against the Crimson Tide (32-28) when the Dores rallied for eight runs on eight hits to bust the game open. Will Toffey led off the big inning with a double to begin a streak of six straight Commodores to reach base, including five straight hits. Dansby Swanson’s two-run double and Zander Wiel’s RBI-double gave the Commodores three doubles in the frame on their way to matching the SEC Tournament record with eight in the game.

Vandy stretched the lead to 16-1 with a pair of three-run rallies in the fifth and sixth innings. Jason Delay and Ro Coleman opened the fifth inning with back-to-back doubles before Zander Wiel’s second double of the afternoon made it 13-1. Delay’s second double of the game came in the sixth to score Bryan Reynolds with Coleman’s third hit of the game quickly scoring Delay. Rhett Wiseman’s sacrifice fly to deep right field set the final score at 16-1.

All nine Vanderbilt starters registered at least one hit and scored at least one run with eight of the nine starters driving in at least one run. The Commodores eight doubles in the win matched LSU’s output from their 1997 game against Tennessee. The Dores also matched season-highs in hits and runs in advancing to the semifinals against Texas A&M.

Four Commodores recorded three-hit games with Coleman, Wiel, Reynolds and Delay all picking up three knocks. For Delay, it matches a career-best along with his three runs while his four RBI set a new career-high. Wiel drove in four runs in a game for the fourth time this season picking up a pair of run-scoring doubles to go with his first inning RBI-single. Reynolds’ three hits are his most since April 24 with his three runs matching a career-high.

Lost in the all the offense was Philip Pfeifer’s complete game as the lefty allowed one run on four hits with nine strikeouts in his first career complete game. The junior gave up a run on two hits in the first inning but rebounded to allow only a pair of singles the rest of the way to earn his fourth win of the season. Pfeifer finished off the win in style striking out the side in the seventh inning to wrap up the mercy-rule win.

Alabama starter Will Carter took the loss allowing five runs, four earned, on five hits over three-plus innings. All five Crimson Tide pitchers allowed at least two runs in the loss. Mikey White drove in the lone run for the Tide in the first inning.

The Commodores and Aggies will square off tomorrow at noon on SEC Network. Walker Buehler gets the ball for the Dores against Texas A&M right-hander Andrew Vinson.