Auburn Handles Samford, Arkansas Next

Auburn controlled things from start to finish in defeating Samford 11-4 Tuesday night.

Auburn, Ala.--Six Auburn pitchers combined to allow just eight hits and the Tigers got a pair of three-run home runs from Dan Gamache and Trent Mummey in an 11-4 victory Tuesday night over Samford at Plainsman Park. Stephen Kohlscheen pitched two scoreless innings in his first career start to pick up the win and coach John Pawlowski said it was good to see another all-around solid performance by his team as it improved to 28-14 with the win.

"We used six pitchers and Stephen Kohlscheen did a really good job in the beginning of the game," Pawlowski said. "I thought his breaking stuff was pretty good. He's really been working on his slider and I thought he threw some really good ones today so that was encouraging. Defensively I thought we played solid defense on the infield. Casey McElroy made a number of good players out there."

Allowing just one hit and striking out three, Kohlscheen earned his first career win in a designated start. Slade Smith allowed two runs on four hits in two innings while Zach Blatt, Ty Kelley and Sean Ray combined to allow just one hit in four innings. Jon Luke Jacobs made his first appearance since April 10 against LSU and allowed two runs on one hit.

The story was Kohlscheen on the mound though. Delivering the powerful fastball he has shown at times this season, he looked to be in solid control. That's something that has come from several positive outings in a row he said.

"It's always good when you can get a start," Kohlscheen said. "Coach told me yesterday that I had the start and I was pumped. It's good to get a three-run home run early in the game. That makes a starter's job easier to go out there and pitch…whenever you can get in a groove and find your stuff it makes things a lot easier."

Auburn got on the board first in the bottom of the first thanks to the first of the long balls. Justin Fradejas extended his team-leading hitting streak to 23 games with a bunt single to open the inning. It was the 14th bunt single of the year for Fradejas and set the table for the Tigers. It was two outs later before anything else would happen though as a walk to Hunter Morris brought Gamache to the plate. Getting a pitch to drive, the sophomore lifted it high over the wall in center field for a three-run shot.

With a 3-0 lead, Auburn's combined pitching efforts kept that until Auburn could add a run in the third. Leading off with a walk, Mummey quickly stole second with Brian Fletcher at the plate. Turning on a pitch, Fletcher lined it off the monster in left field for a single. Mummey scored easily on the play though to make it 4-0 Tigers.

With Smith on the mound the Bulldogs finally got some offense going as four singles led to a pair of runs in the top of the fourth before Auburn would once again strike via the long ball. A Ryan Jenkins single and a walk by Fradejas brought Mummey up with a chance to break the game open. He did just that as his blast to right field easily cleared the wall for his eighth homer of the year.

Holding a 7-2 advantage, Auburn's pitching efforts continued to be strong as a scoreless fifth gave the Tigers another chance to add to the lead and they did just that as a Jenkins single scored Gamache to make it a six-run lead. Two more runs would score in the seventh on a Kevin Patterson sacrifice fly and a single from Justin Hargett. Now leading 10-2, Auburn scored on a Wes Gilmer single to center field in the eighth inning. Samford added two meaningless runs in the ninth to make the final 11-4.

At the plate Jenkins had three to lead the Tigers while Fradejas, Mummey, Fletcher, Gilmer and McElroy all added two hits. Mason Meredeth led Samford with two hits

Auburn will return to SEC play this weekend as the Tigers travel to Arkansas to face the SEC Western Division leading Razorbacks in a three-game series.

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