Tigers Eliminated From Tournament by Defending National Champions

Auburn Designated Hitter Justin Bryant had 2 hits and one RBI in the Tigers' loss to South Carolina in Hoover today.

It was no secret that the Auburn Baseball team had a tough assignment in today's SEC Tournament opponent - South Carolina. The Gamecocks are the two time Defending National Champions.

Nevertheless the Tigers gave the Carolinians all they could handle as they were eliminated 5-3.

"I'm really proud, first of all and foremost, of how our team competed today," said Auburn Head Coach John Pawlowski. "I thought they battled all three games of this tournament. Today was another battle for us. I thought (Caolina's ace) Michael Roth threw the ball extremely well. Unfortunately, we didn't have many opportunities."

South Carolina had a 5-1 lead in the fifth but the Tigers battled back closing the gap to two runs. The Plainsmen had two runners in scoring position in the seventh and the eighth but couldn't bring them home.

With two outs and runners in scoring position in the eighth, Ryan Tella hit a double and scored on Justin Bryant's single, bringing Patrick Savage to the plate as the tying run. Savage then hit a deep fly to the left field gap that was chased down by the Gamecocks's Tanner English to end the threat.

Auburn finished the season 31-28 while South Carolina's record improved to 40-16. The Gamecocks continue the hunt for the Conference Tournament Title and will probably be picked to host an NCAA Regional next week.

Auburn has enough wins to qualify for the NCAA Tournament but with an RPI of 57, they are a team that's on the bubble.

The Tigers will go home to await Monday's announcements of which teams will receive bids to the Big Dance. ESPNU will broadcast the NCAA Tournament Selection Show at 11am CST.

Stay tuned.

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