Auburn Wins Game And Series With Hunter Morris Walk-Off Hit, Downs Kentucky 6-5
April 25, 2010
AUBURN, Ala. - Hunter Morris lined a single into right to score Justin Fradejas from third with the game-winning run as Auburn rallied from a run down in the final inning to claim a series-clinching, 6-5, win over Kentucky on Sunday afternoon. The win improved Auburn's record to 27-14, 10-8 SEC and gave Auburn back-to-back home SEC series wins for the first time since the 2008 season.
"We found a way to win a ball game today and split today's doubleheader," Auburn Head Coach John Pawlowski. "After the first game (an 8-7 loss) the kids were disappointed. They were down and frustrated. They kept their composure and won game two."
With the score tied and men on first and third and two out in the bottom of the seventh of a seven-inning game, Kentucky opted to pitch to Auburn's top hitter in Morris, who was already 1-for-2 with a run scored in the game, extending his hitting streak to 16 games with a second-inning triple. Down 0-2 in the count, Morris fouled off a pitch to extend his at bat before dropping one in front of Kentucky right fielder Chad Wright for the walk-off win.
"You have to pick your poison with our lineup for the most part. We have a lot of guys swinging it well. Had they not pitched to me, (on deck hitter) Tony Caldwell would have done the same thing," Morris said. "To have that confidence from the top to the bottom in our lineup is a great feeling.
"I got the barrel on it and it found a hole. I thought the right fielder was going to come in on it and catch it but it fell and we won," Morris said.
Auburn was up 4-0 after a four-run second in the seven-inning contest as Morris scored on a Tony Caldwell RBI groundout following his triple and then Ryan Jenkins laced his second home run of the season, a three-run job to right-center off of Kentucky starter Taylor Rogers (4-5).
"I was looking for something out over the plate that I could go the right side to move the runners up," Jenkins said. "The first pitch was a good pitch to hit and I just got a little under it (to foul it off). The second pitch was a little lower and I was able to stay on it and somehow it got through the wind."
Kentucky (23-17, 6-12 SEC) crept back into the game by scoring a run in the top of the fourth on Lance Ray's RBI double and then tied it at 4-4 in the top of the sixth when Ray cracked a three-run home run off of Auburn starter Grant Dayton.
Kentucky took a 5-4 lead in the top of the seventh on a Gunner Glad sacrifice fly only to have Jenkins' leadoff bloop single down the line in right to start the bottom half of the inning ignite Auburn's rally.
Creede Simpson came in to pinch run for Jenkins and went to second on Justin Hargett's sac bunt. A Fradejas single to center scored Simpson as the throw in from center was high and wide of the plate to tie it at 5-5. After Rogers got Trent Mummey to pop up for the second out, Brian Fletcher legged out an infield single to short to set the stage for Morris.
Dayton went 6 1/3 innings for Auburn but did not factor into the decision, allowing five runs on six hits and a walk while striking out six.
Austin Hubbard (4-2) picked up the win by getting the last two outs of the seventh. Entering with men on first and second, Kentucky successfully pulled off a double steal, allowing Glad's sac fly to tie the game. Hubbard than issued an intentional walk to Ray to put men on first and second before he struck out Keenan Wiley to keep it a one-run game.
Rogers was tagged for the loss but was not on the mound when Morris hit his liner into right. Instead it was Nick Kennedy, who came on following the Mummey pop-up and then faced Fletcher and Morris.
Fradejas extended his hitting streak to 22 games with a first-inning single and finished the game 2-for-3 with a walk, a run and a RBI.
The win captured the series for Auburn after it lost the Saturday game, 8-7, when play resumed Sunday morning.
Auburn returns to the field on Tuesday night at 6:30pm when it plays host to Samford.
Auburn 6, Kentucky 5 (Apr 25, 2010 at Auburn, AL)
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