Tigers Look To Regroup Against Davidson

Auburn, Ala.--Coming off a disappointing weekend series when they dropped two of three games to Elon, the Auburn Tigers get back to work on Tuesday when Davidson comes to town for a single game.

Coach Tommy Slater said that the game will be a challenge because Davidson is always well-coached and is improving as a program.

"Dick Cook, their head coach, is a tremendous guy," Slater said. "He's a great coach. He's been there forever. He was part of the 2000 USA Gold Medal team. He was on that staff in Sydney. He's a well-respected baseball man and does a great job."

The Wildcats are led by All-American candidate Jay Heafner. A third baseman in addition to the closer for Davidson, Heafner is coming off a season in which he hit .448 with 11 home runs, 18 doubles and added 58 RBI. His batting average was the second-highest in the country in 2005. Slater said that Heafner is a great player on a team that will cause some problems for the Tigers.

"One of their kids, I think his name is Heafner, was the leading hitter in all of NCAA Baseball last year," Slater said. "If he wasn't the leading hitter he was one of the top three. He had just sick numbers. They are always really good and their kids always pitch well. We'll have our hands full like we always do."

Coming off a school-best season last year when they went 26-24, the Wildcats are off to a strong start in 2006 with a record of 5-1. That includes two wins over Georgetown and a victory over NCAA Regional participant Army.

For the Tigers the weekend was a rough one as a lack of offense hurt in the first two games, but it all came together for a blowout win in game two of Sunday's doubleheader. After struggling on the mound in the opener the pitching staff came together against the Phoenix on Sunday, allowing just six runs in two games. Slater said that having to use so many different pitchers on Sunday will make Tuesday a tougher prospect for his pitching staff.

"Anytime you have a Sunday doubleheader you know going into Tuesday that you're going to have to have just about everybody throw," Slater said. "Woodall threw only about 30 so he'll be in the mix in relief. I don't think he'll be in the starter role. Then you have (Clarence) Nicely, (Grant) Cardwell and some of those guys in the early stages of the game. Then (Peter) Wiggins should be available and Johnny Thompson. We should be able to staff it up pretty good."

The first pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m. on Tuesday. It is also Russell Athletic Day at the park where every child under the age of 17 will be admitted for just two dollars.


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