The Alabama Crimson Tide (34-25, 14-15 SEC) will take on the No. 2 ranked and second seeded LSU Tigers (49-9, 23-7 SEC) in a SEC Tournament elimination game on Friday.
First pitch for the fourth-round game is slated for 3 p.m. CST, from the Hoover Met. Friday's game will be televised on CSS and will be available on ESPN3.com. The audio broadcast will be available on the Crimson Tide Sports Network and also on XM radio channel 199 and Sirius radio channel 158.
Alabama is 2-1 in the 2013 SEC Tournament following a 7-5 win, in 10 innings, over No. 21 Mississippi on Thursday. The 10-inning game against Mississippi marked the ninth extra-inning game of the season for Alabama, which sets a new school record. All nine games have been against top-25 opponents and the Tide is 3-6 in extra-inning games. The Tide's previous record for extra-inning games in a season was eight, when the 1986 team posted a 6-2 record.
The Tide opened the tournament with a 6-3 win over Auburn in Tuesday's first-round elimination game. Alabama then suffered a 3-0 loss to No. 2 LSU on Wednesday to move to the loser's bracket. After the Tigers defeated Alabama 3-0 on Wednesday to open their tournament, LSU fell to No. 15 Arkansas, 4-1, on Thursday night.
Friday's game between Alabama and LSU will mark the fifth meeting of the season between the two teams. The Tigers have won four of the five games this year. LSU won the regular season series, 2-1, after winning the first two games 5-0 and 11-8, respectively. After the Tigers won an epic 16-inning battle in game two, Alabama salvaged the final game of the series 4-3 in 10 innings.
Alabama will throw freshman right-handed pitcher Mike Oczypok on Friday. Oczypok, who will be making his 11th appearance and fourth start of the year, has a 4-1 record with a 3.72 ERA. Oczypok took the loss in the 16-inning game against LSU, after throwing 2.2 innings, allowing three runs on three hits with three walks and two strikeouts.
LSU will start junior RHP Ryan Eades, who will make his second start of the year against Alabama. Eades threw 4.0 innings in the second game of the series during the regular season and allowed five runs on eight hits with three strikeouts. Eades enters the game with an 8-1 record and a 2.70 ERA in 14 starts. He has 71 strikeouts in 86.2 innings pitched this year.
When Alabama and LSU meet on Friday, it will mark the 358th meeting all-time between the two schools, and the fifth of the season. After dropping two of three SEC games to the Tigers during the regular season and one in the SEC Tournament, Alabama is 195-159-3 all-time versus LSU.
Friday's game between Alabama and LSU will mark the 19th meeting in the SEC post-season, as Alabama is 7-11 against the Tigers in the SEC Tournament. Including this year's 3-0 win on Tuesday, LSU has won the last four meetings in the SEC Tournament and five of the last six dating back to the 2006 season. Prior to this season the last time Alabama and LSU played in the SEC Tournament, the Tigers defeated the Tide 4-3 in 10 innings in the 2010 championship game.