April 16, 2006
AUBURN, Ala. -
Auburn starter Chris Dennis limited Mississippi State to two runs on four hits in five innings of work and Andy Bennett finished 2-for-4 with three RBIs as the Tigers defeated the No. 8 Bulldogs, 7-3, on Sunday afternoon to take the series from MSU.
"We played well in all three phases of the game - pitching, defense and hitting - and that was the key to the game," AU Head Coach Tom Slater said. "Chris Dennis has shown that, when healthy, he can give us a solid five-inning outing every time out and he was certainly healthy today."
After allowing a single run in the first, Dennis (2-3) settled in nicely, allowing just three more hits as the Tigers moved to 18-21, 6-9 SEC on the year. The win was the first for Dennis since the season-opener.
"I felt good throughout my work this week and I was feeling good and was confident today," Dennis said.
The Tigers took the lead for good in the bottom of the second at 2-1 as Justin Bristow's sacrifice fly to left scored Bennett, who had led off the inning with a single.
The Tigers added two insurance runs in both the fifth and seventh innings as Bennett drove in three of those runs when he reached on a fielder's choice in the fifth to score Boutwell and singled in the seventh to score Mike Bianucci and Josh Donaldson.
Bianucci belted his team-leading seventh home run of the season in the bottom of the first to knot the game at 1-1.
Peter Wiggins also bounced back nicely on the hill for the Tigers as he allowed just two hits in three full innings of relief of Dennis.
"This was a day where we needed Peter to throw well for us and he gave us three solid innings," Slater said.
The Tigers will get back on the road for a game at Riverwalk Stadium in Montgomery, home of the Biscuits, for a 6:30 p.m. CT game with Troy on Wednesday.