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Auburn 10, Alabama State 2: Tigers get back on track with easy win

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Auburn got back to its winning ways against Alabama State Tuesday night.

Anthony Hall photo

Will Kendall got the start for Auburn (14-6), but Trey Wingenter (1-0) was the star on the mound, holding Alabama State to one run over five relief innings picking up a big bounce back win for the Tigers, as Auburn defeated the Hornets, 10-2, Tuesday night at Plainsman Park.

Continuing his comeback from Tommy John surgery last year, Kendall made his second start of the year against ASU (14-8). In a short outing, he threw two innings, allowing three hits and a walk, but only being hurt by a towering second-inning home run over the left field wall off the bat of slugger Waldyvan Estrada.Auburn answered right away in the bottom of the second with a leadoff double from Ryan Tella, who came around a scored on a Blake Austin single. Dan Glevenyak hit into what should've been a double play, but an error by State's first baseman allowed the inning to continue and Damek Tomscha to score, giving the Tigers a lead that never went away.

A big fourth chased ASU's starter Anthony Ricciardi (1-3) and put four runs on the board, helping to give a sense of comfort to the rest of the game. Austin got another big hit, scoring Patrick Savage with an RBI double, although the catcher was thrown out trying stretch the gapper into a triple. Jordan Ebert drove in Glevenyak on a single, then was caught between first and second a couple of pitches later, but advanced to second while Jackson Burgreen scored on a throwing error by ASU catcher Richard Gonzalez. Cullen Wacker then doubled home Ebert, but like Austin, he was also thrown out at third, ending end the inning.

Meanwhile, Wingenter was taming the Hornets' bats in every inning save the fifth, when a walk, sac bunt and single led to a double steal that made it 6-2.

The Tigers capped the scoring in the seventh with another four-run burst, putting the result beyond any doubt. Tella hit a two-run single, Savage hit an RBI double and pinch-hitter Kody Ortman drove in Tella on a sac fly to center to make it 10-2.

Garrett Cooper, Austin, Savage and Tella all finished with two hits, while Wacker finished 3-for-4. The bench was emptied a bit late, with early season starters and little-used young players Sam Gillikin, Tanner Cimo, Hunter Kelley, Dillon Smith and Mitchell Self getting some defensive outs and plate appearances in the final two frames, and the only real late blip was an error at third by Self. Matt Schultz and Craig Shirley threw the final two innings, allowing just one hit and one walk while striking out two.

Auburn hits the road for Mobile where the Tigers play top-80 RPI Southern Miss Wednesday night at 7 p.m. Sophomore righty Trey Cochran-Gill is scheduled to get the start.