AUBURN, ALABAMA (EETV)- A sold-out crowd of orange-and-blue faithful pours out of the seats and into the walkways at Plainsman Park. The wave of support for the orange-and-blue crashes out from the stands and onto the field.
The sold-out crowd was not enough for Auburn as they fell to Jacksonville State 5-2 on Tuesday in Plainsman Park. With the loss, Auburn falls to 17-8 on the season.
“Just didn’t link up and happen at all for us tonight offensively,” Auburn head coach Butch Thompson said. “Two runs on 10 hits. Just disconnected and never put those together.”
Jacksonville State came into this midweek matchup winning seven of their last eight ball games. On Tuesday, they jumped out like a red hot ball club hitting back-to-back doubles and taking an early lead. Auburn was chasing the Gamecocks the rest of the way.
The most damage that the Gamecocks did was when they sent two across the plate in the fifth and the eighth inning. In the fifth, Auburn picked up two quick outs before Parker Carlson walked two straight batters.
“It was really low-level pitching at that point,” Thompson said. “But that’s a teaching point for a freshman is was that is.”
Carlson proceeded to throw a wild pitch that brought in a run and gave up a double to Jacksonville State’s Carson Crowe.
The Gamecock’s first three batters mustered four of their team's six hits and turned them into four doubles. Crowe accounted for two of the four doubles, while T.J. Reeves accounted for one double and scored two runs.
“It was centered around Reeves and Crowe,” Thompson said. “They showed up in the first inning and they showed up in the fifth inning.”
Auburn was able to put the bat on the ball in this game collecting 10 hits in the loss, but they struggled to bring runners across the plate. Jacksonville State was able to collect six hits in the win.
"Their center fielder ran down a couple balls that were hit hard," Thompson said. "When we hit it hard, it just found a glove tonight."
Sonny DiChiara and Kason Howell were the only two Tigers who could reliably put the bat on the ball. The pair of seniors combined to go 4-for-9 from the plate and accounted for one of the Tiger's two runs.
Blake Rambusch was able to extend his hitting streak to 15 games when he picked up a hit in the ninth inning. Rambusch has now reached base in 82 of his last 83 games dating back to his days at Grayson College.
Sophomore Joseph Gonzalez came on in relief in this game after missing two weeks of action. Gonzalez retired the five batters he faced in just thirteen pitches. The return of Gonzalez will be crucial for Auburn as they head into the gauntlet of SEC play.
"He'll be ready to go now," Thompson said. "Maybe we could have gotten him in at a different time of the ballgame, but that looked like Joseph out there again. That was good."
Auburn will look to get back into the win column and pick up another SEC series win on Thursday as they travel to Baton Rouge, Louisiana for a three-game series against No. 12 LSU. First pitch on Thursday is set for 6 p.m. CST and can be seen on SEC Network.