Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Auburn's starting pitcher Jon Luke Jacobs (19)in the SEC baseball tournament at Region's Park Wednesday May 25, 2011

HOOVER, Alabama -- Auburn's season will be on the line tomorrow.
The Tigers scored three unearned runs in the first inning but then were shut down by South Carolina ace Michael Roth. The top-seeded Gamecocks beat the Tigers 7-3 on the first day of the SEC tournament at Regions Park.
Auburn (29-28) will play the loser of the Georgia-Vanderbilt game in an elimination game tomorrow. The game is scheduled to start 30 minutes after the early game, so approximately 12:30 or 1 p.m.
The Tigers must finish over .500 to be eligible for the NCAA tournament, so a loss tomorrow would not only eliminate them from Hoover, it would end their season.
Auburn jumped out quickly on Roth with three error-aided runs in the first inning.
Tony Caldwell smacked an RBI single and Kevin Patterson added a two-RBI double down the right field line a couple batters later.
Roth, a lefty who throws at a difficult angle, had never given up more than three runs in a game all season. Auburn had three in the first inning.
After the first, Roth looked more like his old self. He pitched a complete game, surrendering only six hits while walking two and striking out two.
Auburn starter Jon Luke Jacobs was lifted after three innings. After a 1-2-3 first, he allowed back-to-back singles and back-to-back doubles to start the second but escaped after allowing only three runs.
Carolina took the lead by adding a run in the third and tacked on another in the fourth.
The Gamecocks added two more runs in the sixth when Zach Blatt walked and hit a batter before exiting. Ethan Wallen, Blatt's replacement, allowed both inherited runners to score.

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