Auburn unable to complete sweep against South Carolina
Auburn was nearly able to complete the sweep against South Carolina but came up just short as the Tigers lost 8-7 to the Gamecocks in Columbia.
The Tigers entered the ninth inning trailing 8-6 but Bobby Pierce led the inning off with a home run to make it a one-run game. Cooper McMurray walked to put the tieing run on but pinch-runner Josh Hall was picked off. Bryson Ware singled to keep the threat going but the next two batters were retired to end the game.
“I just thought the effort was tremendous,” head coach Butch Thompson said. “Bobby there in the ninth just kept us engaged and Ware gets a hit. It just felt like we kind of ran out of outs today instead of losing the ballgame because the competitive spirit was so good.”
The Tigers once again took an early lead, putting up four runs in the first inning. Chris Stanfield walked and scored on a fielder’s choice, Bryson Ware hit a two-run homer and Cole Foster hit a solo shot.
The Gamecocks quickly responded, scoring two runs of their own in the first inning. Nate LaRue gave Auburn a 5-2 lead with a solo home run of his own in the second inning.
South Carolina answered with two runs in the fourth and another in the fifth to tie it at 5-5 before Ware led the sixth inning off with his second homer to retake the lead. It was his 18th of the season.
The Tigers were unable to hold onto their lead as Tanner Bauman surrendered a three-run homer in the seventh inning.
Auburn’s eight pitchers combined to walk eight batters and allow 11 hits. True freshmen Cam Keshock and Ryan Olson were the only Auburn pitchers to not allow a run. They combined to pitch 1.2 innings, allowing two hits and striking out one batter.
“Great battle, all three games,” Thompson added. “If we’ll battle that way, like we did last week, if we battle like that, we’ll take whatever happens results wise. If we can keep the process and energy that will equal our true results.”
The Tigers will return to action Friday when they host No. 1 LSU for a three-game series.
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