Auburn, Ala.—Cullen Wacker had four hits to lead a 14-hit Auburn attack in a 12-3 win over Tennessee Saturday on a beautiful day at Plainsman Park. Auburn beat the Vols 12-5 on Friday and will go for the sweep Sunday afternoon.
Dan Glevenyak and Blake Austin added two hits and three RBI each as the Tigers clinched the series with the victory and moved to 24-19 overall and 9-11 in SEC play.
On the mound freshman Daniel Koger got the win, allowing just two unearned runs on three hits in five and two/thirds innings while senior Cory Luckie allowed just a single run in three and one/third innings to pick up his first save. Auburn Coach John Pawlowski said his team put everything together on Saturday in the victory.
“It was a solid offensive game for us,” Pawlowski said. “I thought up and down the lineup we did some good things and put some pressure on them. Koger didn’t have his best stuff, but he went out there and competed and gave us a chance, and then Cory Luckie was outstanding today.”
Suspended from Friday’s game for a violation of team rules, Wacker keyed the Auburn offense with his four hits and he also scored four runs for the Tigers. Scoring 12 runs for the second consecutive day, he said he and his teammates have worked hard this week and its paying off on the field.
“We just have to keep it up,” Wacker said. “We’ve got some momentum going that started Tuesday night (7-0 win at Troy). We got together and talked to everybody and we knew this was a do or die weekend for us. We needed two big wins and we got them and we’re going for the sweep tomorrow.”
Auburn got the offense going in the bottom of the second inning as Wacker singled to lead things off and moved to second on a walk to Glevenyak. An Austin sacrifice bunt moved the runners into scoring position for Jay Gonzalez and the sophomore made the move pay off with a single to right field. Wacker easily scored on the play to put the Tigers on the board first.
With Koger pitching well the Tigers continued the offensive onslaught in the third inning as Ryan Tella started it off with a double to deep right-center field. Tennessee center fielder Chris Fritts bobbled the ball and the speedy Tella advanced to third on the error with no outs. With Creede Simpson at the plate Tennessee starter Robbie Kidd uncorked a wild pitch to allow Tella to score the second run for the Tigers.
Daniel Koger got the win to improve to 3-4 on the season.
Auburn wasn’t finished in the third however as Wacker singled with two outs and moved to second when Glevenyak was hit by a pitch. That brought Austin to the plate and the sophomore continued his solid play with a single to center field. The hit scored Wacker to give the Tigers a 3-0 lead going to the fourth.
Tennessee had not given Auburn much help in the first three innings, but that all changed in the fourth as a one-out walk to Andrews opened the flood gates for the Tigers. Another walk to Tella brought Simpson up with a chance to do some damage. Taking a pitch the other way, the senior doubled home both runners for a five-run advantage.
Hitting Cooper with a pitch would be the last batter for Kidd as Eric Martin came on in relief and walked Wacker to load the bases and bring Glevenyak to the plate. Jumping on the first pitch, the shortstop hit a bomb that just missed leaving the yard for a grand slam. Instead the double scored all three runners and made it 8-0 Auburn. A Gonzalez triple finished off the scoring for Pawlowski’s club in the inning as Koger was staked to a nine-run advantage going back out for the fifth.
The big freshman ran into trouble for the first time as Fritts singled to open the inning to bring Jared Allen to the plate. Getting into one, his liner caught Tella by surprise as he misjudged it on the run and the ball rolled to the wall for a three-run error. Fritts scored on the play and Chris Pierce pushed him across with a ground ball to make it 9-2 Tigers.
In the sixth the Vols again got to Koger as he walked Maddox to start the inning. A ground ball from Zach Osborne erased him at second, but a two-out double from Davis Morgan put runners on first and second. That was all for Koger as Luckie came on and immediately walked Fritts to load the bases for Allen. Showing his toughness, Luckie struck out the right-hander to leave the bags full going to the bottom of the sixth.
The Tigers continued their onslaught as they added to the 9-2 lead with three more in the inning. Leading off, Wacker singled and quickly moved to third on Glevenyak’s second double of the game. One of Auburn’s best hitters in the last two weeks, Austin singled to left field to score both and put the Tigers back up by nine runs. A double play erased the catcher, but Alvord kept the offense going as he pushed the lead to an even 10 with a line drive over the monster in left field. It was his fourth home run of the season and made it 12-2 Tigers going to the seventh.
Tennessee added a single run in the eighth inning, but that would be it for the Vols and Luckie finished things off to secure the win for the Tigers.
Auburn will go for its first SEC sweep of the year on Sunday. The Tigers are expected to pitch freshman Trey Cochran-Gill.
Premium Subscription Signup