Auburn batted around and scored nine runs in the 4th inning and that was the big difference in the game.
"No, really? You think?" I'm sure you're saying. But when you look at the score outside of that inning and just how Auburn failed to capitalize on some excellent opportunities, then you'll understand.
Auburn got things started in the 3rd inning with an Anfernee Grier double to keep his hitting streak alive. He's picked up a hit in every game this season. He was driven home on a Josh Palacios home run on the next at bat. The Tigers added a run when Niko Buentello went yard for his team leading 5th time this season to give Auburn the 3 run lead. Georgia Tech would answer with 2 runs of their own in the bottom half of the inning.
Then came the wonderful 4th inning. I could describe it, but I'll just let Kevin Ives' tweets give you the run down.
Okay, let's recap that Monster AU 4th inning:— PlainsmanParkingLot (@AUPPL) March 15, 2016
Grier 2 RBI single
Ebert single— PlainsmanParkingLot (@AUPPL) March 15, 2016
Grier scores E9
Logan rbi single
Burgreen 2 rbi double
Robert 3u RBI
Nulph 6-3 rbi
Grier flyout ended the inning.— PlainsmanParkingLot (@AUPPL) March 15, 2016
Tigers scored 9 runs on 8 hits with 3 GT errors and 1 LOB.
Tigers lead 12-2 Bottom 4
That's pretty good, no?
It could have been much better for Auburn. The Tigers loaded the bases with one out in the 6th but left them stranded. They loaded the bases in the 7th with 0 outs and then three straight batters struck out. Auburn's bats have been strong for much of the season, but have failed to capitalize on so many great opportunities.
Auburn did manage to get some more runs in the top of the 8th. Grier walked to lead off the inning, then rounded the bases on three balls that got past the catcher. One wild pitch and one passed ball moved him to third before Palacios walked. Then another wild pitch brought him home and Palacios to 3rd. Buentello picked up yet another RBI on a single to score Palacios. That was his 29th of the year. That ended the scoring and Auburn came away with the 14-3 victory.
With Palacios' run, every single Auburn Tiger crossed the plate. That's a pretty good night.
Andrew Mitchell cemented his status as the mid-week starter in this one. He did give up 3 runs on 8 hits, but Georgia Tech is a strong team. He also finished with a career high 9 strike outs in 5 innings pitched. Marc Frazier came on in relief and got into some jams in the 6th and 7th inning, but also got out of them with no damage. He pitched one more inning with no runs given up before Daniel Sprinkle came in to close the game out.
This was definitely a big confidence booster for Auburn to play in their first true road game of the season against a Top 25 opponent and come away with such a dominating win. Hopefully this streak continues over into the weekend as the Tigers will welcome the 2nd ranked Texas A&M Aggies to Plainsman Park this weekend to start the conference schedule.