AUBURN, Ala. Feb. 23, 2013 – Auburn scored three runs in the third inning and limited the Cougars to just four hits on the way to a 5-1 win in the second day of the Auburn Tournament.
College of Charleston (3-3) struggled offensively with just four hits and the team’s only run coming in the ninth inning after Bradley Goodson was hit by a pitch, advanced to third on a passed ball and wild pitch and then came home on a ground out.
Auburn (5-1) bounced back after losing to Middle Tennessee State in the morning game with a strong offensive output and quality start from lefty Michael O’Neal. The Tigers scored five runs on 11 hits, including a two-run, inside-the-park homer from Ryan Tella in the third inning.
O’Neal (2-0) pitched 6.0 innings, allowing just four hits and no runs, while striking out five. CofC starter Jake Zokan (0-1) suffered the loss after giving up four runs, two earned, on seven hits through 4.2 innings.
The Tigers got on the scoreboard in the third inning after a two-out single from Dan Glevenyak and then a hard-hit ball from Tella down the left-field line. The ball went behind a bench down in left field, but was ruled live when left-fielder Brandon Murray tried to retrieve the ball to make a play. Tella and Glevenyak came around to score and give the Tigers a 2-0 lead.
A throwing error from Goodson allowed the inning to continue and a single from Garrett Cooper tacked on another run for the Tigers.
Auburn picked up another unearned run in the fifth inning after a fielding error from Gunnar Heidt with two outs extended the inning and Cullen Wacker hit an RBI single to right field.
The Tigers’ final run came in the seventh inning off of CofC reliever Ryan West who gave up two singles to start the inning. Tella advanced to third on the second hit and came home after Cooper grounded into a double play.
After the fourth inning, the Cougars did not manage a base-runner until the ninth when Goodson was hit by a pitch and eventually came around to score on an RBI groundout from Brandon Glazer.
The Cougars will look to end the two-game skid on Sunday with an 11 a.m. start against Middle Tennessee State. Cougar freshman RHP Nathan Helvey will take the mound for the Cougars, while the Blue Raiders will throw LHP Zac Curtis.