March 21, 2008
Auburn, Ala. -
The Auburn pitching trio of Grant Dayton, Evan Crawford and Bryan Woodall combined to shutdown the Southeastern Conference's highest-scoring offense on Friday night, holding No. 2 Kentucky scoreless in a 2-0 win that snapped UK's 19-game winning streak.
Dayton (2-1) went 6.0 innings for the second time this season, scattering six hits and a walk while striking out five. Though he found himself in a jam in the first with the bases loaded and just one down, he rebounded to get a strikeout and a flyout to end UK's scoring threat.
"Tonight was a big, big game. We were playing the number two team in the nation in Kentucky but everything went great," Dayton said. "Kentucky has real good hitters, but after getting out of the first inning and then we got the run, it brought me back to life. We put up the run in the first and that was enough for my confidence."
Kentucky(19-1, 3-1 SEC) had multiple runners on in three of the six innings Dayton threw but could not push one across as Dayton coaxed 11 flyouts on the night.
"Grant was outstanding and did exactly what we want our starters to do," Auburn Head Coach Tom Slater said. "The backend of the game belongs to Evan and Bryan and Grant did a good job of getting it to them. Evan wasn't as sharp as usual but Bryan did a good job of picking him up and we played great defense behind our guys."
Woodall earned his fifth save in as many tries, entering with two on and one down in the eighth but he got a double-play from the only hitter he faced in the inning and then struckout three after allowing a leadoff single in the ninth.
Mike Bianucci went 3-for-4 for Auburn, singling in Trent Mummey in the first to give Auburn a 1-0 lead and then collecting singles in the third and fifth innings.
Matt Hall (1-3) hit a two-out, RBI double in the fourth to give Auburn the 2-0 edge.
Sawyer Carroll, who entered the game leading the SEC with a .523 batting average, went 1-for-4 on the night, singling in his first at-bat and then not reaching base again, striking out twice.
Hunter Morris went 2-for-3 with a pair of singles to extend his hitting streak to eight games for Auburn.
The shutout was the first of Kentucky since UK was held scoreless at Georgia on May 20, 2006. It was also the first SEC shutout by Auburn since Taylor Thompson and Brett Butts held LSU scoreless on April 7, 2007.
Auburn (13-8, 1-3SEC) will go for the series win at 3pm on Saturday when it sends Fr. LHP Cory Luckie to the mound (2-2) while Kentucky counters with Jr. RHP Scott Green (2-0).