TROY, Ala. – A five-run bottom of the fifth and eight unearned runs doomed Auburn as it fell at Troy, 11-2, on Tuesday night at Riddle-Pace Field. The loss dropped Auburn to 15-10 while Troy improved 16-7.
"Give Troy credit, they played extremely well and they did exactly what they needed to do to win," Auburn Head Coach John Pawlowski said. "They took advantage of a couple of mistakes and they really did a great job tonight. We have to play better defense. We had a chance to get out of an inning and we couldn't handle the ball and consequently put us in real tough spots. This was a poor performance on our side. We have a lot of work to do."
Tied at 2-2 heading to the bottom of the fifth, Troy would use three hits, two walks and an error to score five runs, only one of which was earned. Matthew Howard drew a one-out walk and moved to second on a Garrett Pitts single before a Josh McDorman walk loaded the bases. Ali Knowles then hit a grounder to second baseman Mitchell Self but his thrown to second to start the potential inning-ending double play went wide of Dan Glevenyak, allowing two runs to score to make it 4-2.
Two hitters later Tyler Vaughn singled in a run and put runners on the corners for Logan Pierce, who lofted a ball down the line in left that left fielder Cullen Wacker overran, allowing two more runs in for the 7-2 lead.
Troy starter Ryan Sorce (2-0) went five innings and struck out eight while allowing just two runs (one earned) on six hits without issuing a walk to earn the win. Reliever Nate Hill went four innings and struck out six as Auburn struck out a season-high 14 times.
Jordan Ebert's second career home run gave Auburn a 1-0 lead in the first. The blast was just the sixth of the year for Auburn and its first since March 8 against Brown.
Troy answered with a two-run bottom half of the first off of Auburn starter Trey Wingenter, collecting back-to-back two-out RBI singles from Howard and Pitts to take a 2-1 lead.
Auburn tied the game at 2-2 in the third when a Wacker sac fly scored Hunter Kelley.
Troy broke open the game with a four-run eighth, scoring four unearned runs on a pair of Auburn errors.
Trey Cochran-Gill (0-1) suffered the loss, allowing all five fifth-inning runs.