Offense explodes as Auburn defeats Jacksonville State, 14-2

SOURCE: AUBURN ATHLETICS

No. 21 Auburn turned in its biggest offensive game in a month as the Tigers defeated Jacksonville State, 14-2, Tuesday night at Rudy Abbott Field.

Auburn’s 14 runs and 16 hits were good for the team’s third highest output of the season, and the Tigers 12-run margin of victory was its largest of the year.

Five different Tigers collected multiple hits in the game, including three apiece from Conor Davis and Devin Warner, who also combined for seven RBI. Judd Ward, Edouard Julien and Brody Moore added two hits each with Moore’s effort coming after pinch hitting in the seventh. Nine different players ultimately recorded a hit in the game, while eight drove in a run.

“A ton of guys contributed tonight,” head coach Butch Thompson said on the Auburn Sports Network. “I thought that was the key. We got a lot of guys in and swung the bats really, really well.”

After falling behind on a solo home run in the bottom of the first, Auburn (27-14) took the lead behind a three-run third inning. Edouard Julien drew a bases-loaded walk to tie the game before Davis gave the Tigers the lead with a two-run single to left.

Warner, who made his first start in the contest, recorded his first career hit with a single to start the fourth inning, and Davis later came around with the bases loaded for the second time in as many innings. The junior delivered his second two-RBI single of the game and matched a season-high with four RBI.

Jacksonville State (21-18) drew closer with a run on a RBI groundout in the bottom of the sixth, but Auburn distanced itself with a six-run frame in the top of the seventh. Warner collected his second hit and drove in two runs on a single to start the inning, and Ryan Bliss capped it off with a two-RBI double to left center. Chase Hall and Ward also turned in RBI singles in the frame.

“I was just trying to stay calm,” Warner said. “Kind of go back to when I was playing little league and make it easy. I’ve been doing this for forever and just tried to do that.”

The Auburn offense continued to produce with three runs in its next at-bat. Three straight batters drove in runs in the frame as Moore started the scoring with a RBI single to right. Everett Lau followed with a RBI double to left, and Warned capped things off with a RBI single to left center.

Ryan Watson made his first start of the season and allowed one run on four hits with two walks and a career-high five strikeouts. Peyton Glavine (1-0, 1.23) made his first appearance in a month and turned in 1.2 scoreless innings with a pair of strikeouts en route to earning his first career win.

Will Morrison made his 13th appearance of the year to start the sixth, and Blake Schilleci finished up the frame by stranding a pair of runners. Schilleci ultimately turned in 1.1 scoreless innings and struck out three batters in relief.

“Coach Smith has been preaching all year about just handing off the baton to everybody else coming in the game,” Schilleci said. “Whenever you are at your worst or struggling with something, people out of the bullpen have to come and get the first guy out. The main thought process for every guy out of the ‘pen tonight was just to get that first guy.”

Carson Skipper and Bailey Horn worked the eighth and ninth innings, respectively, and didn’t surrender a run. Horn allowed a double to start the ninth but struck out the side to finish the game.

Auburn faced a quick turnaround before traveling to Nashville for a three-game series vs. No. 4 Vanderbilt (31-9, 12-6 SEC) Thursday-Saturday.

Categories: Alabama Sports, Sports