LAS VEGAS – Alabama baseball coach Brad Bohannon could get used to this.
Connor Prielipp was dominant in his second start of the 2020 season, allowing no runs on no hits through five innings in an 8-0 win against UNLV on Friday in the first game of a doubleheader in the desert.
Alabama won the second game 5-4 thanks to a ninth-inning leadoff home run from Jackson Tate.
Prielipp struck out eight and walked just one. Through two games the Crimson Tide freshman has not given up a run in nine innings and has 15 strikeouts with just two hits allowed.
“Connor was awesome for us in Game 1,” Alabama coach Brad Bohannon said. “It was his second time out and he pitched very good in his first outing. When they get out there the second time you are curious if they are going to take a step forward or backwards. He obviously was even better today. I’m really excited about where he is and where he’s going.”
Prielipp was back up with plenty of offense, including a pair of solo home runs from Sam Praytor, who went 3-for-3. Brett Auerbach went 2-for-2 with two RBIs.
“I felt really good today,” Prielipp said. “I got ahead with my fastball and got to work with my curveball a little bit. I just had a good outing.”
Tyler Ras pitched three solid innings, giving up five hits but no runs with no walks and a strikeout.
In the second game, Tate was the big hero with his second home run of the season, an opposite-field shot to right field to break the 4-4 tie in the ninth.
“It was a huge win for us,” Bohannon said. “It really didn’t go our way. They got a couple of cheap hits, we smoked a couple of balls right at ’em. We were behind and had to fight back. Just really proud of the kids and the resolve they showed.
Brock Guffey got the win, pitching one inning. Chase Lee got the save with a 1-2-3 ninth.
UNLV senior Chase Maddux, the son of Atlanta Braves Hall of Famer Greg Maddux, got the start but left after five innings. He gave up three earned runs on six hits with five strikeouts.
Connor Shamblin got the start for Alabama and also left after five innings of work, allowing four runs, three earned, on seven hits with a walk and four strikeouts.
T.J. Reeves saved a run in the seventh off a double from Jack-Thomas Wold. His relay home was in time as catcher Peyton Wilson applied the tag on James Gamble trying to score from first.