Feb. 16, 2014
AUBURN, Ala. - The Auburn University softball team got great performances from nearly every person on its roster Sunday afternoon as it closed out the Tiger Invitational with a 16-0 win over Winthrop to claim the Tiger Invitational title.
The win for Auburn was its sixth straight since suffering its only loss at the hands of Notre Dame last weekend. It's also the fifth time this year the team has topped the 10-run plateau in a game and fourth win in five innings.
The Tigers tallied 16 runs on 11 hits and had 10 different players record at least one hit in the game. The biggest output came from freshman Jenna Abbott, who hit her first two home runs of her career after coming off the bench in the fourth inning. The freshman also took over the circle in the next half inning and pitched Auburn through the final two innings, giving up only two hits and facing the minimum six batters.
Another freshman, Kasey Cooper also had one of the big hits in the game as she knocked Auburn's second grand slam of the year over the right-centerfield fence for her second long ball this year. The four runs scored on one swing of the bat was part of a seven-run AU third inning that broke the game wide open for the Orange and Blue. The grand slam was Cooper's only hit of the night, but her average will stay above the .400 mark (.406) heading into next week's tournament.
Sophomore Marcy Harper picked up her fifth win of the year as she stays undefeated at 5-0 after tossing three innings of no-hit ball, giving up only two walks and fanning two Winthrop batters.
"Marcy, again, was great," Auburn head coach Clint Myers said. "She's starting to re-kindle her old ways after throwing three innings of no-hit ball tonight. What we're trying to do is get better, so when we're in conference play, we'll be able to go out and put quality starts together and quality at-bats."
Auburn started out the game getting two runs in the first inning, benefitting from a Winthrop error and two hits by Morgan Estell and McKenzie Kilpatrick. The Tigers added two more in the next inning after an Emily Carosone double to take a 4-0 lead after two frames. Carosone and Estell both finished the game with two RBi as they were two of four Tiger players to record a multi-RBI game on Sunday.
The seven-run third was the big break Auburn needed to take control as four of the seven runs scored came off the Cooper grand slam. All seven runs were scored off of only two hits as the AU hitters did a great job getting on base even when the pitches weren't finding the plate.
With the 11-0 lead heading into the fourth, Myers started bringing in some of his players off the bench. After Jordan Rocker walked to lead off the inning, Abbott hit her first homer of the game, only her second collegiate hit. In the next at-bat, sophomore Maria Mitchell also went yard, her first of the year and first of her NCAA career.
The final two runs of the game came off the bat, once again, from Abbott in the fifth as two of her three hits this season have gone over the fence. Abbott's final batting line for the game ended up as a 2-for-2 performance with four RBI and two runs scored.
Auburn returns to the field next Friday as it will take part in its third non-conference tournament of the year, the Wilson/DeMarini Classic. The classic will take place at Jane B. Moore Field in Auburn, Ala., and Auburn's first opponent of the weekend will be Jacksonville State on Friday, Feb. 21 with first pitch scheduled for 3:30 p.m.
The Auburn games can be heard locally on WEGL 91.1 or online at AuburnTigers.com. Live video and live stats will also be available on AuburnTigers.com throughout the weekend for all games.
All home games at Jane B. Moore Field this year will require a purchased ticket unless otherwise specified. All ticket information can be found here on AuburnTigers.com.