March 28, 2010
AUBURN, Ala. - Grant Dayton induced 14 fly outs in his 7 1/3 innings of work, at one point retiring 10 in a row on fly balls, and the Auburn offense awoke to score 10 runs on nine hits and six walks as Auburn defeated No. 14 South Carolina, 10-6, on Sunday afternoon to salvage the final game of the three-game series. Auburn's win snapped South Carolina's 13-game winning streak and improved Auburn's record to 17-7, 4-2 SEC.
"With a team like South Carolina and the offense they can put up and the wind blowing out to left, I thought Grant did a great job of keeping them off base," Auburn Head Coach John Pawlowski said.
Dayton (3-1), who has now won two straight SEC starts for the first time since his freshman year of 2008, allowed three runs on four hits in the third but otherwise kept the South Carolina bats in check, not allowing multiple hits in an inning again until the eighth when he departed with one down and a runner on second following a Parker Bangs RBI double.
"My arm felt really good in the bullpen and I found a groove. I was able to locate my fastball and didn't give them much off-speed because I didn't need to," Dayton said. "The wind blowing in helped a lot. They hit two really good fastballs and the wind just made them die."
Creede Simpson led Auburn with three hits and two RBI from the five-hole in the lineup, the first time this season he has hit anywhere other than second. His fourth-inning single off of Jay Brown drove in two runs and ended Brown's day after 2 2/3 innings of relief work in which he allowed three unearned runs on three hits and two walks.
"We needed some guys to step up. We dropped the first two games and it was big to come out here and get this win," Simpson said. "I was able to come up with guys on base and get a hit. We had a bunch of hits yesterday but we weren't able to get them when it counted."
Auburn collected nine hits on the day, only one of which went for extra-bases, Tony Caldwell's (1-for-4, 2 R, RBI) leadoff double in the sixth. Combined with the 11 singles on Saturday, Auburn collected 18 straight singles from the top of the first on Saturday through Caldwell's double off the wall in left on Sunday.
"We came up with several big two-out base hits today. We had our chances yesterday and it didn't work out but we were thankful that some guys stepped up for us today," Pawlowski said.
Auburn went up 3-0 in the first on RBI hits from Brian Fletcher (1-for-4, 2 RBI) and Justin Bryant (1-for-2, 2 BB, 2 RBI) and a Casey McElroy (0-for-3, HBP, R, RBI) sacrifice fly. It tacked on another run in the second as Ryan Jenkins (0-for-3, BB, R) walked, went to second on a passed ball, moved to third on Justin Fradejas' (1-for-3, BB, 2 R) sac bunt and scored Caldwell's RBI groundout.
Jenkins' walk to start the second signaled the end of the day for South Carolina starter Tyler Webb (1-2) as he was tagged with four runs on four hits and a walk, facing nine hitters on the afternoon.
South Carolina (19-5, 5-1 SEC), which hadn't trailed for 76 straight innings entering the game, got three runs back in the top of the third as Jackie Bradley, Jr. (2-for-5, 2 R, 2 RBI) singled home Scott Wingo (2-for-4, R) from second and then Parker Bangs (2-for-5, 3 RBI) doubled in Whit Merrifield (2-for-5, 2 R) and Bradley, Jr. to make it a one-run game.
Auburn reclaimed its four-run lead in the fourth to go up 7-3. Justin Hargett (2-for-4, 2 R) singled and scored on a Fletcher bases-loaded walk while Simpson's two-out hit scored Fradejas and Caldwell.
A Bryant bases-loaded walk and Hargett's subsequent two-run single in the sixth put Auburn up 10-3, giving Dayton enough cushion to pick up his first career win over South Carolina in three starts.
South Carolina scored two in the eighth off of Dayton, though he had already left by the time the second run scored, and one in the ninth off of Austin Hubbard.
Auburn returns to the field on Wednesday when it plays at Troy at 6pm CT.
Auburn 10, South Carolina 6 (Mar 28, 2010 at Auburn, AL)
South Carolina...... 003 000 021 - 6 12 1 (19-5, 5-1 SEC)
Auburn.............. 310 303 00X - 10 9 1 (17-7, 4-2 SEC)
Win-Grant Dayton(3-1) Loss-Tyler Webb(1-2) T-2:52 A-2316
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