Auburn returned home from a successful weekend series where they notched two conference wins against South Carolina in Columbia, but a lack of offensive production and a poor showing from the pen leaves the home team saddled with a weekday loss.
FINAL – Auburn-3 Georgia Tech-9 – W-Hughes (3-2) L-Gray (1-3)
Garett Wade was given his eighth appearance of the season as he was once again given the weekday nod. Auburn helped him out early as the Tigers scored in the second inning as a Will Holland single brought home a based Steven Williams. Bliss and Holland continued the trend as they made their way home off a couple of RBI’s from Scheffler and Howell, respectively.
Wade pitched two solid innings before the wheels began to fall off in the third, allowing five hits across his 16 batters faced. Wade allowed three runs, issued three walks, and sent three bats down on strikes before he was eventually yanked after his ninth recorded out. Shortstop Luke Waddell opened up the scoring for the Jackets as he dashed home off of a Kyle McCann single.
Wade tossed 60 pitches before he left the bump, with Kyle Gray arriving in relief. The trial by fire proved difficult for the southpaw as he managed to retire just a single batter out of the four he faced. Bailey Horn received a similar treatment as he matched Gray’s pitch count of 16 before heading to the dugout, and escaping the fourth as the Georgia Tech lead swelled to two runs.
Blake Schilleci made his second appearance of the year as he put up a valiant fight against the rallying visitors. Schilleci tossed three scoreless frames and notched three strikeouts, effectively snuffing out the Yellow Jacket offense. But, as the sun set on the ballpark, the Auburn bats went the way of the dropping temperature and the Tigers failed to score another run for the rest of the game. Auburn tallied only three hits after the third inning, and collectively struck out six more times.
Will Morrison closed out the game for Auburn after Schilleci reached his limit, and Auburn faded into the night after pinch-hit efforts by Everett Lau and Chase Hall. With the win, Georgia Tech improves to 20-9 on the season and Auburn falls to 22-7 with the loss.
Following the game, skipper Butch Thompson stated that the team’s mentality for future games is going to be “It’s on,” referencing the team’s urgency to win any day of the week, whether it’s a Thursday or Tuesday game. Thompson plans to keep Burns at the starting spot for the Friday game, and that moving Brooks Fuller to the Thursday start would be the “most logical” move heading forward.
Auburn will play a shifted conference series this weekend against Arkansas, with Game 1 coming Thursday at 6:30 p.m., Game 2 on Friday at 6 p.m., and Game 3 Friday at 2 p.m.