Auburn softball team fights back, but falls short


Jenna Abbott hit her third home run in six at-bats in Auburn's near miss against FSU. (Zach Bland photo)

Auburn
Auburn
(13-2-1)
 Feb. 26, 2014
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
R
H
E
 Florida State
0
4
1
0
0
0
0
5
7
1
 Auburn Tigers
0
0
0
0
4
0
0
4
6
0

Florida State
(14-1)

By Phillip Marshall
AuburnTigers.com

AUBURN, Ala. - A sizzling line drive that turned into a double play. A drive that was almost a walkoff home run.  Auburn's softball team was that close, but No. 9 Florida State escaped Jane B. Moore Field with a 5-4 victory Wednesday night.

The No. 25 Tigers fell 5-0 after three innings at Jane B. Moore Field, but they rallied for four runs in the fifth inning and threatened in the sixth and the seventh. Sophomore pitcher Lexi Davis rebounded from three shaky innings to shut the Seminoles down over the final four innings.

Auburn fell to 13-2-1. Florida State improved to 14-1.

First-year coach Clint Myers, who took Arizona State to seven of the last eight College World Series, said he was proud of the effort.

"I thought we showed great character," Myers said. "I'm not disappointed. We fought. We didn't make an error. We didn't beat ourselves. There are a couple of things we have to do a little better. We have to stay with our plan, but we had chances to win that ballgame, several times. We hit the ball pretty hard. If we can go up and have at-bats like that and learn from it, I think it was a good life lesson."

Leading off the fourth, freshman Jenna Abbott, making her first start, drove a 2-1 pitch over the right field fence for Auburn's first hit off Lacey Waldrop. It was Abbott's third home run in six at-bat. Kasey Cooper's run-scoring single and Branndi Malero's two-run double cut the Seminoles lead to a single run.

With the bases loaded in the sixth, Emily Carosone smashed a line drive right at second baseman Tiffani Brown, who threw to first to double up Tiffany Howard and in the inning.

In the seventh, after Melero singled with two outs, centerfielder Courtney Senas ran down McKenzie Kilpatrick's drive on the warning track to end it.

"We're not going to make excuses," Myers said. "We lost. But what I tried to get across to them was what we did well. When we play Oregon on Friday, we start there. We know what we need to do. We should have won. Look at the balls we hit hard, but they were right at people. We didn't make any luck tonight. Good teams make their luck."

Malero and Abbott had two hits apiece for Auburn. Davis took the loss on the mound falling to 7-2. She gave upfive runs on seven hits, striking out six and walking six. She gave up just one hit over the final six innings.

"I had a little tough time adjusting to the strike zone," Davis said. "I had to do it. It's definitely hard, especially when you are throwing strikes and they aren't giving them to you. We had to try to work around it."

The Tigers will leave Friday for Orlando and the Diamond 9 Citrus Classic. They ill play Oregon on Friday.

"If we can come back and play well against Oregon, this was a good life lesson," Myers said. "We learned. We tell them every day two things are going to happen. You are going to get better or get worse. I think we got better tonight."

Phillip Marshall is a Senior Writer for AuburnTigers.com. Follow Marshall on Twitter: