TUSCALOOSA, Ala. In a game that matched the longest in the 120-year history of LSU baseball, the second-ranked Tigers plated three runs in the bottom of the 16th inning and clinched their weekend series with the Alabama Crimson Tide by a score of 11-8 early Sunday morning in Sewell-Thomas Stadium.
LSU (37-3, 15-2 SEC) moved into a tie for first place in the overall Southeastern Conference standings following Vanderbilt's split with Georgia on Saturday. The Tigers' only other times of playing a 16-inning marathon occurred on March 22, 1996 at Florida and on April 10, 1972 against South Alabama. It also tied the longest game in Alabama history as the Tide dropped to 23-18, 8-9 in SEC play and 0-3 in extra-inning contests this season.
'It's almost hard to put into words what we just went through,' said LSU head coach Paul Mainieri. 'There were just so many peaks and valleys during the course of this game. I think it's more stressful for the visiting team. There are things I saw today that I haven't seen in 30 years. It was exhausting. We certainly made a memory. This is a game that these guys on this team will never forget.'
After both teams failed to score for six consecutive innings entering the 16th frame, LSU put together a two-out rally when it counted most. After Raph Rhymes and Mason Katz were retired, Christian Ibarra drew a two-out walk. Tyler Moore, pinch-hitting for Andrew Stevenson, then lined a double down the left field line to put runners at second and third against Tide reliever Mike Oczypok.
With JaCoby Jones at the plate, Oczykpok uncorked a wild pitch that allowed Ibarra to score from third and finally break the tie. Jones and Ty Ross followed with clutch two-out RBI singles in the 16th.