Auburn 7, UConn 3: Keegan Thompson impresses in pitching debut

Damek Tomscha had a nice day at the plate for the Tigers. - Auburn University photo

Thompson pitched well, and the Tigers' bats woke up against the Huskies.

In his collegiate debut on the mound, Auburn freshman Keegan Thompson lived up to the hype. Thompson gave up one run and struck out nine in 5 2/3 innings, and the Tigers defeated UConn, 7-3, Sunday at the Snowbird Classic in Port Charlotte, Fla..

Thompson was rarely in trouble, throwing 60 of his 98 pitches for strikes. He had a no-hitter going through 4 1/3 innings and allowed just one walk and two hits, both of which came in the fifth inning. With two on, one out and a run in, he buckled down and got out of the jam with two straight strikeouts. Thompson's fastball topped out at 92, and he was consistently buckling UConn hitters with a good curve.

Auburn (2-1) left the bases loaded without scoring in the first inning, continuing the offensive struggles from Saturday. But in the bottom of the third, the Tigers finally broke through. Center fielder Ryan Tella, making his 2014 debut, reached on a one-out single and eventually came home on a fielder's choice off the bat of first baseman Daniel Robert. Third baseman Damek Tomscha drove in Thompson with a single, left fielder Jordan Ebert scored Robert on a squeeze bunt and catcher Blake Austin brought in Tomscha with a single.

Tomscha drove in two more with two-out bloop single in the sixth, and shortstop Dan Glevenyak scored Austin with a sacrifice fly in the seventh.

Auburn did a much better job of executing on offense after losing in a shutout to Ohio State. The Tigers stole six bases, two coming from Tella, who was 2-for-4 with two runs scored. Glevenyak went 2-for-3 with a run and an RBI, and Tomscha led the way at the plate, going 2-for-4 with one run and three RBI.

Thompson picked up the first win of his Auburn career. Reid Carter, Daniel Koger and Terrance Dedrick combined to allow two runs on four hits and two walks in the final 3 1/3 innings.

Brian Ward took the loss for the Huskies (0-3), giving up four runs -- two earned -- seven hits and two walks in 3 2/3 innings. He struck out two. The Huskies committed five errors, leading to four unearned runs.

Auburn returns to the Plains for the home opener Wednesday afternoon against Alabama State. First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m. CT, and Justin Camp is set to take the mound for the Tigers.

Connecticut 3 (0-3)

Player ab r h rbi bb so po a lob
Sundberg cf 3 1 0 0 1 2 1 0 2
Siena 2b 4 0 1 0 0 0 1 3 0
Melley dh 3 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 0
Darras 1b 4 1 2 1 0 2 9 1 1
Davey lf 4 0 1 1 0 3 3 0 1
Daniello 3b 4 1 1 0 0 1 1 1 1
Garabedian rf 3 0 1 1 1 1 2 1 0
David c 3 0 0 0 1 0 4 0 0
Hill ss 3 0 0 0 0 1 3 3 0
Ward p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Slade p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Ruotolo p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Zapata p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Totals 31 3 6 3 4 11 24 11 5

Auburn 7 (2-1)

Player ab r h rbi bb so po a lob
Anfernee Grier rf 4 0 1 0 1 0 1 0 3
Dan Glevenyak ss 3 1 2 1 1 0 3 1 0
Ryan Tella cf 4 2 2 0 1 0 1 0 1
Keegan Thompson p/dh 5 1 0 0 0 2 4 2 0
Daniel Robert 1b 2 1 0 1 2 0 6 0 0
Terrance Dedrick p 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Damek Tomscha 3b 4 1 2 3 0 1 0 1 5
Jordan Ebert lf 3 0 0 1 0 0 2 0 2
Hunter Kelley ph/lf 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Blake Austin c 3 1 1 1 1 0 8 3 0
Damon Haecker 2b 4 0 1 0 0 0 2 2 0
Reid Carter p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Daniel Koger p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Totals 34 7 9 7 6 3 27 9 12

Score by Innings                    R  H  E
-------------------------------------------
Connecticut......... 000 011 010 -  3  6  5
Auburn.............. 004 002 10X -  7  9  1
-------------------------------------------
E - Siena(1); Daniello(1); Hill 2(2); Ward; Robert, D.(1). DP - Auburn 2. LOB - UCONN 5; Auburn 12. 2B - Darras(1); Daniello(1). HBP - Tomscha, D.. SH - Ebert, J.(3). SF - Glevenyak, D(1). SB - Glevenyak, D(2); Tella, R. 2; Thompson, K.(1); Austin, B.(1); Haecker, D.(1).

Connecticut ip h r /td> er bb so wp bk hbp ibb ab bf fo go np
Ward L,0-1 3.2 7 4 2 2 2 1 0 0 0 20 23 4 5 89
Slade 1.2 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 4 5 3 1 21
Ruotolo 1.2 2 3 1 3 0 0 0 0 0 7 11 3 1 37
Zapata 1.0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 3 4 1 1 17
Auburn ip h r er bb so wp bk hbp ibb ab bf fo go np
Keegan Thompson W,1-0 5.2 2 1 0 2 9 0 0 0 0 19 21 7 0 96
Reid Carter 1.1 2 1 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 6 6 2 2 29
Daniel Koger 0.2 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 3 0 1 14
Terrance Dedrick 1.1 1 0 0 1 2 0 0 0 0 4 5 0 1 22

Win - Thompson, K. (1-0). Loss - Ward (0-1). Save - None. WP - Ward; Carter, R.. HBP - by Zapata (Tomscha, D.). PB - Austin, B.. Pitches/strikes: Ward 89/53; Slade 21/12; Ruotolo 37/21; Zapata 17/9; Thompson, K. 96/60; Carter, R. 29/19; Koger, D. 14/7; Dedrick, T. 22/11.

Umpires - HP: Zack Tieche 1B: Jerry Aller 3B: Steve Sambuccio
Start: 11:02 am Time: 3:08 Attendance: 376
Weather: 55, sunny, calm

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