NCAA Baseball News

Auburn’s four-run 9th inning surge not enough to beat Texas A&M

Auburn’s four-run 9th inning surge not enough to beat Texas A&M

Auburn’s Ike Irish hit a grand slam in the 9th inning of Friday’s game at Texas A&M, but it was not enough to take down the No. 4 Aggies.

Texas A&M (24-3, 5-3 SEC) scored seven runs over the 5th, 6th, and 7th innings to win the high-scoring affair, 12-8. With the loss, Auburn (16-10, 1-7 SEC) has now dropped its third-straight series to open SEC play. Head coach Butch Thompson understands the frustration that his team is feeling but knows that the only cure is to keep competing.

“It’s OK to be frustrated,” Thompson said postgame. “We think a lot of ourselves. I like this roster and coaching staff. To not be able to perform and keep up with the guys in the league, it’s ok to be frustrated. You just can’t be sad and have to keep playing.”

The Aggies struck first on a two-run homer by Jace LaViolette in the 1st inning, with Auburn responding in the 2nd with a home run of their own by Cooper McMurray to cut the deficit to 2-1. Texas A&M then scored three runs to create separation from Auburn over the 3rd and 4th innings before the Tigers gained three runs back in the top of the 6th. Irish and McMurray combined to plate three runs to inch closer to the Aggies, 5-4.

Momentum was quickly taken away in the bottom half of the inning thanks to a five-run surge by Texas A&M. The headliner of the inning was a three-run home run by Caden Sorrell. Mixed in with two RBI singles, the Aggies moved out to a 10-4 lead going to the 7th inning.

Texas A&M used two solo home runs over the next two innings to secure the win, with Irish’s grand slam cutting the large deficit to four runs with his late-inning grand slam.

Irish and McMurray led the team in hits by collecting three each, with Irish leading the way in RBI with five. Auburn ended the day with 12 hits as a team, but also struck out 14 times in the loss.

Chase Allsup took the loss on the mound after allowing five runs on seven hits through 4 2/3 innings of work, striking out five. Auburn used four pitchers out of the bullpen on Friday, with John Armstrong turning in the best outing by striking out two batters and limiting Texas A&M to one run on two hits in one complete inning of work.

Auburn looks to take a game from the Aggies on Saturday to salvage a win in the series. Game thre between Auburn and Texas A&M is set for 7 p.m. CT at Blue Bell Park in College Station, Texas. SEC Network will broadcast the game live.

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