No. 23 Auburn Falls On A Walk-Off Home Run, 4-3, At Alabama
April 7, 2012
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Taylor Dugas' two-out, two-run home run in the bottom of the ninth sent the No. 23 Auburn baseball team to a 4-3 loss to Alabama on Saturday afternoon at Sewell-Thomas Stadium. The loss dropped Auburn's record to 17-13, 6-5 SEC.
"When we have opportunities in close you have to find a way to scratch across a run. Unfortunately we were not able to do that and consequently we couldn't finish this thing off," Auburn Head Coach John Pawlowski said. "I thought we pitched very well except for the last pitch, obviously. Slade (Smith) left that ball up."
Auburn took a 3-2 lead into the ninth and had one down when pinch hitter Cameron Carlisle drew a five-pitch walk. Nine-hole hitter Hunter Gregory then bounced one up the middle that Smith (2-4) grabbed and threw to second to get the lead runner but the turn at second was not quick enough to get Gregory at first. Dugas then belted the game-winning home run, his second of the season, to right to send Auburn to its first SEC series loss of the season.
Smith took the loss as he was charged for three runs on four hits and two walks in four innings, striking out two. He was called on out of the bullpen with two down in the fifth after Auburn starter Will Kendall threw one pitch to Gregory and left with an elbow strain. Prior to that Kendall has surrendered just one unearned run in 4 2/3 innings on five hits.
Trey Pilkington (1-0) earned the win out of the Alabama bullpen, limiting Auburn to just one hit over the final 3 2/3 innings, striking out two.
Alabama (12-19, 3-8 SEC) tied it in the fourth as Jared Reeves reached on an error and came home on a Jon Kelton two-out single three batters later.
Auburn then went up 3-1 in the sixth as Creede Simpson walked, went to second on a Ryan Tella single and then scored as Garrett Cooper's sac bunt attempt turned into a throwing error by Alabama catcher Brett Booth, allowing Simpson to score and Tella to get to third. Justin Bryant then laid down a perfect bunt on the squeeze play to score Tella.
Alabama narrowed the margin to a run, 3-2, in the seventh as Kelton walked and scored from second on a Gregory single.
Auburn will try to salvage the final game of the series at 1pm on Sunday when it sends Daniel Koger (2-1) to the mound. Alabama will start Jon Keller (0-1).
Alabama 4, Auburn 3 (Apr 07, 2012 at Tuscaloosa, AL)
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