The Troy Trojans did not have any home field advantage Wednesday night, as they lost 13-8 to the visiting Auburn Tigers. The loss was the second in as many days to the Tigers. Auburn outscored Troy 39-11 in the season sweep of the Trojans.
“Tonight was a lot like last night since we got behind early and got a few runs to get us back in the ball game, but then they put the big inning on us,” Troy head coach Bobby Pierce said.
Troy (25-18) trailed 5-1 entering the bottom of the fourth, but scored four runs on one hit to tie the game before Auburn (27-19) blew the game open in the fifth with eight runs on seven hits.
“The first half of the game was sloppy on our end especially from the pitching side of things,” Auburn head coach John Pawlowski said. “We allowed 14 free passes via walk or hit by pitch and somehow we dodged a few bullets in a few innings and we were able to come away with a victory. They tied it up and our guys came in and went back to work and put up eight runs quickly.”
But Pawlowski said a baseball coach is never happy with a lead.
“The momentum can swing and they battled back in the eighth inning and we had to bring in our closer when they loaded the bases,” he said. “College baseball is a game where you never feel like you have enough runs or you are out of a game and certainly that was the situation tonight.”
Pierce said his team has not shown him much in the last two games.
“We are very disappointed offensively in the last two nights,” he said. “We are not getting enough done and certainly with runners out there with chances to score, good offensive teams have got to find a way to get those guys in.”
Michael Hurst (4-0) picked up the win on the mound for the Tigers and Steven Morelock (0-1) took the loss for the Trojans.
Following an uneventful first inning that saw zero runs, Auburn jumped out to a 5-1 lead with three runs in the second inning and one in each of the fourth and fifth innings.
Brian Fletcher singled and scored on a Tony Caldwell single for the Tigers in the second. Dan Gamache hit a sacrifice fly to center to score Ben Jones who had walked and Wes Gilmer singled to score Caldwell and cap the inning for Auburn.
After Justin Hargett singled, Fletcher hit a sacrifice fly to score Hargett in the third. Chad Watson plated Blake Martz on a fielder’s choice in Troy’s half of the third and Auburn had another sacrifice fly to go up 5-1. Trent Mummey brought Caldwell home for the fifth run.
Troy broke up Auburn starter Paul Burnside’s no-hit bid and Auburn used three pitchers in the bottom of the fourth, as Troy scored four runs on one hit to tie the game.
Charley Williams walked to open the inning, Trevor Tyre was hit by a pitch and Williams scored on a ground ball by Brett Henry. Tyre scored on a groundout by Miles Hoyle. Then the free passes started coming fast, as Daryl Otwell and Jake Sullivan walked and Martz was hit by a pitch to load the bases. After the second pitching change of the inning Adam Bryant walked to score Otwell and Watson singled to bring home Sullivan to cap the inning with the score tied at 5-5.
The Tigers wasted no time grabbing the lead back in the top of the fifth by exploding for eight runs on seven hits.
Troy went down in order in the fifth and escaped another bases loaded jam in the top of the sixth. Auburn held a 13-5 lead heading into the bottom of the sixth.
The teams traded goose eggs until Troy came alive in the bottom of the eighth. Miles Hoyle and Ryan Ditthardt opened the inning with back-to-back doubles to cut the lead to 13-6. With two outs Daniel Peterson roped a ball to the right side and an Auburn error led to two runs for the Trojans, as Ditthardt and Sullivan scored.
Steven Rosado and J.R. Myers walked to load the bases, but a ground out ended the threat and Troy trailed 13-8.
Auburn went down without a fight in the ninth and Troy could not push any more runs across in the game.
Click here for a photo gallery of Wednesday’s action