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Auburn Topped By Southern Miss, 5-4


AUBURN, Ala. - The Auburn baseball team couldn't find the big hit on Sunday afternoon, stranding 14 runners on base as it fell to Southern Miss, 5-4, in the final game of the Auburn Baseball Tournament. The loss dropped Auburn's record to 7-6 while Southern Miss improved to 8-4.

"At some point we have to come through with a big pitch or a big base hit and we haven't been able to do that yet," Auburn Head Coach John Pawlowski said. "Southern Miss fought back and put some pressure on us early. It's a tough weekend. We lost two-out-of-three at home, which is disappointing."

Auburn was a victim of its own success at points, loading the bases in the second, fifth and eighth innings but failing to push a run across in any of those situations.

The loss spoiled another solid start from Daniel Koger, who worked into the sixth inning before turning things over to the bullpen. In 5 1/3 innings he allowed three runs on five hits and four walks, striking out three.

The two teams traded second-inning runs on a Blake Brown solo home run in the top half and a Zach Alvord RBI single in the bottom half.

Southern Miss then built a 3-1 lead on a Brown bases-loaded walk in the third and an Ashley Graeter sac fly in the fifth. Auburn would answer in the bottom of the sixth when Jay Gonzalez doubled in Dan Glevenyak and then scored on a throwing error to tie it at 3-3.

Southern Miss broke the tie with three straight doubles off of Slade Smith, Cory Luckie and Justin Bryant in the eighth to go up 5-3.

Cullen Wacker's ninth-inning home run to lead off the inning got Auburn to within a run and the team would put the tying run into scoring position with one out but failed to bring it home.

Ryan Tella finished the day 2-for-5 and was the only Auburn hitter with multiple hits on the day.

Smith (0-3) was saddled with the loss, allowing the one run in two innings of work.

James McMahon (1-0) earned the win out of the bullpen with 1 1/3 innings of shutout relief while Bradley Roney got the final three outs of the game to pick up his first save of the season.

Earlier in the day, Purdue (8-1) picked up a 5-2 win over Charleston Southern to finish the weekend a perfect 3-0. Charleston Southern (4-7) was winless on the weekend.

Auburn returns to the diamond on Tuesday at Riverwalk Stadium in Montgomery for the fourth annual Capital City Classic against rival Alabama. Auburn is undefeated in the non-conference game.



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