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Auburn vs Jacksonville State
March 29, 2022; Auburn, AL, USA; The team reacts during the game between Auburn and Jacksonville State at Plainsman Park. Mandatory Credit: Jacob Taylor/AU Athletics

The No. 17 Tigers fall short in series opener against the Mississippi State Bulldogs

AUBURN, ALABAMA. (EETV) - The No. 17 Auburn Tigers struggled on the road losing 7-6 in their series opener against the Mississippi State Bulldogs on Thursday night.

"We've played this game over and over and have found a way, just not tonight," head coach Butch Thompson said.

The Tigers went scoreless in the first two innings which allowed Mississippi State to grab a 2-0 lead going into the third. 

Auburn was able to get a run on the board after centerfielder Nate Larue crushed a ball 423-feet over the left-field wall, putting the score at 2-1 in the top of the third inning. 

Mississippi State answered in the bottom of the third with a single RBI increasing the lead to 3-1. 

Hayden Mullins and Carson Skipper did the job in the fourth, fifth, and sixth innings keeping Mississippi State scoreless, allowing only one hit in the three innings. 

Auburn rallied back in the fifth and sixth innings with a couple of big swings from Mike Bello and Blake Rambusch. 

In the top of the fifth Bello was able to hit a ground out to second base allowing Cole Foster to score, putting Auburn down by one. 

Starting off the sixth inning Auburn was able to load the bases after a walk and an error by Mississippi State. Another walk allowed Brody Moore to score, Tying the game at 3-3. Blake Rambusch came in swinging with a huge single to right field, allowing two Auburn Tigers to score giving Auburn the 5-3 lead. 

In the top of the Seventh Mississippi State put down two K’s keeping The Tigers from scoring, The Bulldogs then came into the bottom of the seventh crushing two homers, tying the game 5-5. 

The Tigers regained the lead in the top of the eighth after Cole Foster hit a solo homer over left field, putting the game at 6-5.  

Blake Burkhalter was able to close out the inning scoreless after delivering a pair of clutch K’s to get Auburn back on the plate going into the ninth. 

After Auburn left a couple runners stranded on base in the top of the ninth, Mississippi State started the bottom of the inning with a walk, and after a potential double-play was mishandled both runners were able to get on base. A sacrifice bunt put the two runners in scoring position and an intentional walk loaded the bases. Mississippi State capitalized on a wild pitch from Burkhalter, tying the game and a walk ended the game with the final score being 7-6. 

Auburn is scheduled to play the Bulldogs in game two on Friday at 6 p.m. CT on SEC Network+.