LSU's Helenihi gets 3 hits in series win over Alabama

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Derek Helenihi collected three hits and four others each had two as LSU defeated Alabama 9-7 in the rubber match of the Southeastern Conference series Sunday.

Alabama (17-15, 5-7) got on the board first when Brandon May hit a home run in the second inning. It was the Crimson Tide's first homer in the last 57 innings of play. LSU (20-11, 5-7) countered May's home run with three runs of their own in the bottom of the frame.

In the sixth, Jake Smith hit a two-run homer to left field to put Alabama up, 7-4. But LSU scored three in the bottom of the inning to tie it up. The Tigers then held Alabama scoreless in the final three innings and scored one in the seventh and eighth to win the game. Helenihi scored the Tigers' final run - his first home run as a Tiger in the bottom of the eighth.

Paul Bertuccini (1-0) was credited with his first win of the season. He pitched 2.2 innings, giving up one hit and striking out three. Casey Kebodeaux (2-4) was charged with the loss. He pitched two innings, giving up two earned runs.

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