Cullen Wacker, Garrett Cooper and Blake Austin each went deep in the third inning, helping Auburn beat Texas A&M, 10-5, at Blue Bell Park Saturday and win its third consecutive game. It's the Tigers' longest win streak since Vanderbilt snapped one of seven games three weeks ago.
Auburn (19-12, 3-8 SEC) grabbed a rare early lead in the first inning, going ahead 1-0 on Cooper's RBI single that scored Ryan Tella. The huge third opened with Wacker and Cooper hitting back-to-back homers on two-strike pitches and ended for A&M starter Grayson Long after he allowed a single to Jackson Burgreen. The next hitter was Austin, whose two-run homer to left made it 5-0.
In the fourth, Burgreen scored Wacker with a grounder to second and reached on Charlie Curl's error. Austin sacrificed Cooper home with a fly ball, and Burgreen stole second and scored courtesy of a Dan Glevenyak single, moving the score to 9-0.
Auburn starter Michael O'Neal kept the Aggies (19-13, 5-6) bats silent for most of his start, although his fourth inning was a little rocky. O'Neal hit the leadoff batter, Krey Bratson, allowed a single by Allemend, then another single by Cole Lankford that was made worse by his throwing error, allowing one run to score. A&M pushed its second run across later in the inning thanks to a Brandon Wood sac fly. Still, O'Neal had a solid afternoon pitching six innings and giving up six hits and three runs (two earned) while striking out one. He also walked one and hit two batters. Trey Cochran-Gill inherited O'Neal's final two runners in the seventh and allowed an RBI single from Mikey Reynolds. By that point, Wacker had singled in Tella in the top half of the inning for Auburn's tenth run.
TCG threw over 70 pitches, allowing just one hit and one hit batter in his first two innings, before running into some ninth-inning trouble. He was tagged for two two-out runs, but escaped with a final fly out by Wood, stranding Aggies on the corners and sealing the victory.
Auburn will go for the sweep Sunday at 1 p.m. Texas A&M will start 6'6 righty Rafael Pineda (2-2), while the Tigers will go with Will Kendall. After Saturday's win, head coach John Pawlowski said Kendall will be without a pitch-count limit for the first time this season.
Box score, via auburntigers.com
Auburn 10 (19-12,3-8 SEC)
|Ryan Tella cf||5||2||2||1||1||0||6||0||0||.306|
|Jordan Ebert 2b||5||0||1||0||0||1||2||2||2||.297|
|Tanner Cimo 2b||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||.100|
|Cullen Wacker dh||5||2||3||2||0||0||0||0||0||.315|
|Garrett Cooper 1b||5||2||3||2||0||0||7||1||2||.362|
|Damek Tomscha 3b||3||0||0||0||1||0||1||3||0||.259|
|Jackson Burgreen lf||4||2||2||1||1||0||3||0||0||.255|
|Blake Austin c||4||1||1||3||0||0||3||0||3||.289|
|Dan Glevenyak ss||4||1||1||1||0||1||2||2||1||.243|
|Sam Gillikin rf||3||0||0||0||0||2||1||0||1||.163|
|Patrick Savage ph||1||0||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.268|
|Hunter Kelley rf||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||.207|
|Michael O'Neal p||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||-|
|Trey Cochran-Gill p||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||-|
Texas A&M 5 (19-13,5-6 SEC)
|Mikey Reynolds ss||5||0||1||1||0||1||1||5||0||.382|
|Krey Bratsen cf||4||2||2||0||0||0||7||0||1||.302|
|Blake Allemand 3b/2b||5||1||2||1||0||0||0||2||2||.255|
|Cole Lankford 1b||5||0||3||1||0||1||8||0||1||.381|
|Brandon Wood rf||3||0||1||1||0||0||3||0||2||.333|
|Jonathan Moroney lf||4||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||.261|
|Mitchell Nau c||3||1||0||0||1||0||4||0||2||.232|
|Troy Stein dh||4||0||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||.312|
|Charlie Curl 2b||1||0||0||0||0||0||4||1||0||.220|
|Logan Taylor ph/3b||2||1||0||0||0||1||0||0||0||.206|
|Grayson Long p||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||-|
|Kyle Martin p||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||2||0||-|
|Corey Ray p||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||-|
|Ty Schlottmann p||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||0||-|
Score by Innings R H E ------------------------------------------- Auburn.............. 105 300 100 - 10 14 1 Texas A&M........... 000 200 102 - 5 11 2 -------------------------------------------
|E - O'Neal, M.(2); Reynolds(9); Curl(2). DP - Auburn 1; TAMU 1. LOB - Auburn 9; TAMU 9. 2B - Lankford(7). HR - Wacker, C.(1); Cooper, G.(4); Austin, B.(2). HBP - Glevenyak, D; Bratsen; Wood; Curl. SH - Tomscha, D.(3); Gillikin, S.(3). SF - Austin, B.(2); Wood(1). SB - Tella, R. 2(8); Ebert, J.(3); Burgreen, J.(2).|
|Michael O'Neal W,6-2||6.0||6||3||2||1||1||0||0||2||0||22||26||10||6||88||2.44|
|Trey Cochran-Gill S,2||3.0||5||2||2||0||2||0||0||1||0||14||15||3||4||69||3.92|
|Grayson Long L,3-1||2.1||5||4||4||2||2||0||0||0||0||13||15||2||3||69||4.32|
Win - O'Neal, M. (6-2). Loss - Long (3-1). Save - Cochran-Gill (2). HBP - by Martin (Glevenyak, D); by O'Neal, M. (Bratsen); by O'Neal, M. (Curl); by Cochran-Gill (Wood). BK - Martin(3). PB - Austin, B.(3). Inherited runners/scored: Cochran-Gill 2/1; Martin 1/1; Ray, C. 1/0. Pitches/strikes: O'Neal, M. 88/53; Cochran-Gill 69/43; Long 69/39; Martin 30/20; Ray, C. 57/32; Schlottmann 9/7.
Umpires - HP: Darrell Arnold 1B: A.J. Lostaglio 2B: Chuck Busse 3B: Dennis