A slow start doomed Georgia baseball in the SEC Tournament at the Hoover Met on Tuesday, and Alabama took full advantage.
The Crimson Tide (30-25) jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the first two innings and held on for the 5-3 win over the No. 24-ranked Bulldogs (35-21).
Georgia, which had a No. 11 RPI and No. 2 strength of schedule entering the game, will learn which NCAA Regional it will play in at noon on Monday (TV: ESPN2).
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Alabama, which will likely miss the NCAA Tournament barring a miraculous run in Hoover, next faces Arkansas at 10:30 (eastern) on Wednesday.
UGA coach Scott Stricklin had a feeling his team would need a fast start against a desperate Tide team throwing its ace in its backyard.
“That’s what I said to the team in right field before we started was, ‘it’s 9:30 in the morning (local time), who’s going to start, who’s going to come out of the gate ready to play?’ " Stricklin said. “And next thing you know it’s 5-0 really quick.”
SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year Ben Anderson led off with a single, but the Bulldogs weren’t able to get on the scoreboard until after Alabama ran up its big lead.