March 13, 2010
Auburn, Ala. -
The Auburn softball team got home runs from Lauren Guzman and Caitlin Stangl to defeat the Kentucky Wildcats 3-2 in the Southeastern Conference opener for the both teams Saturday night at Jane B. Moore Field.
Auburn improved to 14-6, 1-0 SEC and Kentucky fell to 14-7, 0-1 SEC. The Tigers and Wildcats will conclude their series with a double-header beginning at noon CT Sunday.
After waiting through a five-hour delay from the original start time due to rain, the Tigers and Wildcats began play at 6 p.m. The teams were supposed to play at 1 p.m.
Anna Thompson started and went the distance for Auburn to improve to 6-4 on the season. Thompson's line, 7.0 IP, three hits, two runs, one earned, one walk and nine strikeouts.
Chanda Bell took the loss for Kentucky to fall to 8-4. Bell allowed three runs, all earned, on six hits with one walk and 11 strikeout's in 5.0 IP.
Auburn jumped on the scoreboard in the bottom of the third inning when Guzman launched a one-out solo home run to left. It gave the Tigers a 1-0 lead and was Guzman's second dinger of the season.
The Tigers extended their lead in the bottom of the fifth inning when Stangl dropped a two-run bomb over the wall in right-center to make it 3-0. It was Stangl's second home run of the season and came with Lindsey Harrelson aboard who was hit by a pitch.
Kentucky cut into the deficit in the top of the sixth inning. With one out, Annie Rowlands was hit by a pitch and then moved to second on a wild pitch. Molly Johnson then drilled a double to the wall in right to score Rowlands and make it a 3-1 game.
A wild pitch moved Johnson to third and a walk to Yocke put runners on the corners with one out. Natalie Smith then lofted a pop-up that Guzman dropped at shortstop, allowing Johnson to score and cut the AU lead to 3-2.
With runners at first and second, Thompson got Cervantes swinging on strike three for the second out of the inning. The Tigers got out of the inning when Rachel Riley ground into a fielder's choice, forcing Yocke out at third.
The Wildcats never threatened in the seventh as Thompson retired the side in order to seal the win.