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Bobby Peirce (27) during the game between the Texas A&M Aggies and the Auburn Tigers at Plainsman Park in Auburn, AL on Friday, Apr 7, 2023. Zach Bland/Auburn Tigers

Auburn loses series and game three to Texas A&M

AUBURN, Ala (EETV) - A rough night for the Auburn Tigers (19-12-1, 4-8 SEC) as they drop game three and the series against Texas A&M (20-12, 5-7 SEC) 12-6. Texas A&M jumped ahead early and ran away with the game, having Auburn try and play catch up all night.

A&M scored in all of the first three innings: three in the first, four in the second and one in the third. The Aggies were led offensively by Jack Moss and Ryan Targac. Moss went 3-5 with an RBI while Targac batted in three going 1-3. The Aggies had four hitters with multiple hits and went on to score 12 runs in the game.

It's been said before about the Tigers this season, but their pitching staff continues to struggle and continues to be wild. Auburn walked 13 batters tonight accounting for three A&M runs. The Tigers also threw four wild pitches giving up a run and advancing five baserunners.

"We lost a lot [of pitchers] and we thought we were going to hide it, but we're not able to anymore; with a long way to go," said Head Coach Butch Thompson. "It's absolutely porous and not good enough to the standard to be competitive in the Southeastern Conference where we stand today. As opposed to woe is me or wallow, it'll be moving forward what's one thing you can do to get things better and start from there."

Starter Tommy Sheehan went 0.2 innings pitched giving up a leadoff single and going on to walk the next three batters before giving up a single to Ryan Targac to give the Aggies a 3-0 lead. Sheehan was then pulled for Trevor Horne, who got out of the first, then struggled in the second. Horne went 1.0 giving up four earned runs and walking three. The ball was then given to Hayden Murphy who went 3.0 IP giving up four earned in seven hits, walking just one.

The Tigers did scratch some runs however, Auburn scored in the first and third innings, totaling six runs. Their first two runs came in the first inning thanks to a Bryson Ware single scoring Cole Foster. Cooper McMurray followed that up by hitting a sac fly to score Bobby Pierce.

In the bottom of the third, after Pierce got hit by a pitch to lead off the inning, a couple of walks and a wild pitch gave the Tigers another run before McMurray grounded to the left side scoring a run. Right after Kason Howell sent a single to left scoring Ware. Finally Chris Stanfield doubled scoring Howell.

Drew Nelson was called on to minimize damage in the fifth. Nelson went on to be the only Tiger to not give up a run tossing 2.1 IP walking three and striking out two. Nelson got a lot of miss-contact forcing hitters to fly out for over half of his outs.

It was Zach Crotchfelt who got the call to close out the game. Crotchfelt went 2.0 IP giving up one unearned run in two hits, walking two as he finished the ballgame.

The Tigers will look to bounce back and take on Georgia Tech next on Tuesday, April 11. at 5 p.m. CT.