By: Terrill J. Weil
Da Boot Sports
AUBURN, AL: LSU heads to Auburn for a huge three game SEC series that they must win if the Tigers want to make postseason play. A series loss to Auburn would even jeopardize a spot in Hoover Alabama for the SEC Tournament. But LSU got the job done on Thursday night as they would defeat Auburn 8-3. Lane Marceaux would pitch a great game as he would go into the 7th inning, before Garrett Edwards would come in to finish the contest. The Tigers would also have a good night at the plate coming up with big hits when needed. It was a great team win.
After two scoreless innings to begin the ball game, LSU would get on the board first in the top of the 3rd inning. Alex Milazzo would leadoff the inning with a double down the right field line.
Tre' Morgan would then advance Milazzo to third base with a single to left field. Dylan Crews would then step up to the plate and load the bases as he would reach first safely on a fielders choice.
Auburn pitcher Jack Owen would then hit Gavin Dugas, scoring Milazzo from third and keeping the bases loaded with still no outs. Cade Doughty would then single to right field, scoring Morgan and advancing Dugas to second and Crews to third.
Giovanni DiGiacomo would sacrifice fly out to left field allowing Crews to tag up and score to give the Tigers a 3-0 lead.
Jordan Thompson would then ground into a double play to end the top of the inning.
Auburn would respond in the bottom of the frame as Ryan Bliss would hit a one out double to left center. Tyler Miller would then step up and hit a single to right field to score Bliss.
Landon Marceaux would then get Rankin Woley to ground into a double play to get the Tigers back into the dugout. We would head to the 4th inning with LSU leading 3-1.
Heading into the 6th inning with the score still 3-1, the Tigers were looking to add to their lead, and that they did. Jack Owen would quickly sit down the first two LSU hitters before Cade Beloso would double down the right field line. Drew Bianco would then step to the plate and come up with a big timely hit. Bianco singled to left field scoring Beloso to put the Tigers up 4-1 as we would head to the bottom of the inning.
Marceaux would remain on the mound for the Tigers and strike out the leadoff hitter. Steven Williams would then step up next and blast a home run over the center field wall. The homer would be all Auburn could muster as we would head to the 7th inning with LSU up 4-2.
Marceaux would begin the 7th inning but wouldn't last as Paul Mainieri would need to go to the bullpen after he would give up a one out, solo home run to Ryan Dyal, cutting the LSU lead to 4-3. Javen Coleman would replace Marceaux but struggle to find the strike zone before recording out #2. Garrett Edwards would then enter the contest to get the final out of the inning.
The Tigers would have an inning in the 8th. With one out, Thompson and Beloso would draw back to back walks. Both were able to move up on a wild pitch. Auburn would then choose to intentionally walk Bianco. Milazzo would hit a sacrifice fly to center field, scoring Thompson from third. Tre' Morgan would then step up to the plate and delivery the knock out punch, hitting a triple to right center, scoring Bianco and Beloso. Crews would strike out to strand Morgan on third base as the Tigers would now lead, 7-3.
LSU would be able to string together a couple of hits in the 9th, plating an extra insurance run to take a 8-3 lead into the bottom of the inning.
Garrett Edwards would handle the Auburn hitters in order with a three up-three down bottom of the 9th, as the Tigers would take game one of the series.
“It was a hard-fought win tonight,” said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. “I was really glad we got those late runs in the eighth and ninth innings. It would have been tough to hold onto a one-run lead late in the game against that team. I was pleased we got those four extra runs, and Garrett threw really well for us out of the pen. It was a good victory for us, a total team effort. Landon Marceaux gave us a chance by pitching so well. We got several clutch hits, and I thought the two sacrifice flies by (catcher Alex) Milazzo and (shortstop Jordan) Thompson with two strikes on them were huge runs.”
With the win the Tigers improve to 28-17 overall and 8-14 in the SEC. Landon Marceaux would earn the victory to run his record to 5-4, while Garrett Edwards would record his 4th save of the season...
Next LSU will again face Auburn at Hitchcock Field in game two on Friday night at 7:00pm.