COLUMBIA - A big second inning from Auburn proved to be the difference maker on Friday as the Tigers (21-5, 5-2 SEC) took game one of the series from the University of South Carolina baseball team (16-10, 1-6 SEC ), 4-2, Friday night (March 29) at Founders Park.
Auburn got out to an early lead in the second inning after Daniel Lloyd allowed a leadoff walk and a single up the middle off the bat of Conor Davis. Three consecutive singles followed, as Kason Howell drove Davis in and then Judd Ward brought home Ryan Bliss, giving the Tigers the 3-0 lead with no outs in the inning. Lloyd managed to get out of the jam by retiring the next three batters in a row with runners on first and second.
Carolina got a couple runs back in the bottom of the sixth. TJ Hopkins led off by reaching second on an error and Noah Campbell followed him up with a no-doubt home run to right center field, shrinking Auburn’s lead to 3-2. The Tigers added an insurance run in the top of the ninth. Rankin Woley doubled to bring home Matt Scheffler after his leadoff single. This gave Auburn the 4-2 lead.
Tanner Burns got the win for the Tigers, allowing just four hits and one earned run while striking out seven in 6.2 innings of work. For Carolina, Lloyd suffered the loss, allowing six hits and three earned runs while striking out eight batters in five innings on the mound. Cody Greenhill of Auburn notched his fifth save of the season after striking out one and allowing no hits in the ninth, his only inning on the mound.
Four hits in the second inning led to three Auburn runs as the Tigers took the opening game of the series.
- Noah Campbell hit his fourth home run of the season and seventh of his career in the sixth inning. Campbell is hitting .333 in his last five games.
- The bottom of the Auburn lineup hurt Carolina as the 7-8-9 hitters had six of the 10 hits on the night.