Auburn Suffers Crazy Ending to SEC Tournament Appearance
LSU's Drew Bianco (5) scores the wining run against Auburn in the bottom of the ninth in the SEC Tournament (photo: Vasha Hunt/al.com)
Going into its game with LSU Thursday, Auburn needed a good outing from starter Jack Owen and a strong presence at the plate to stay alive in the SEC Tournament. The Tigers got both and were leading the game 3–2 in the bottom of the ninth with one out when the they suffered a crazy, devastating loss.
Auburn got the pitching it needed and the hits but not the win. Owen allowed only one run on five hits with one walk and five strikeouts in 5-1/3 innings against the No. 17 Bengals. And the Tigers totaled nine hits on the day, led by Judd Ward going 3 for 5 at the plate, yet wound up losing the elimination game 4–3.
With one out and runners on second and third for LSU, catcher Matt Scheffler couldn’t locate a bounced pitch by freshman Brooks Fuller, allowing the tying run to score. Then first baseman Rankin Woley found the ball, made a wild throw to the plate, and the winning run from second gave LSU (36–24) the win.
Coach Butch Thompson said he had never witnessed a game ending like that in all of his years of coaching. It was a heartbreaking way to bow out of the tourney. But, the Tigers must find a way to put it behind them and focus on getting ready for the upcoming NCAA Big Show.
Auburn will find out where it will be playing in the NCAA Tournament during the NCAA Selection Show at 11:00 a.m. CT Monday on ESPNU.