#9 Auburn scored four runs in the top of the seventh inning to roar back and take down #8 Kentucky 4-3 in game one of Sunday’s doubleheader. The Tigers collected six hits in the final frame of the seven-inning game to take game two of the series.
The loss dropped UK to 1-4 in SEC play with all four losses coming to top ten teams. The loss today might have been the most frustrating. The Cats lead for the first six innings of the game, only to see Auburn’s offense wake up in the seventh inning.
Before the penultimate seventh inning, the game was a pitcher’s duel between Auburn’s Davis Daniel and a collection of arms for UK. The only run of the first six innings came in the bottom of the first for the Cats. With the bases loaded against Daniel, Luke Heyer walked to bring in a run and give UK a 1-0 lead.
Thanks to Zach Haake and the UK bullpen, the lead carried over through the first six innings. Haake was effectively wild over 3.2 innings, striking out two and allowing one hit and four walks in his first career start. The JUCO transfer gave way to the bullpen in the fourth inning when Mason Hazelwood took over. Hazelwood and Alec Maley would combine to throw 1.1 scoreless innings of relief and hold the 1-0 lead.
Both teams struggled to barrel up anything in the first six innings. But all that changed in the seventh inning. After throwing a scoreless inning in the sixth, Chris Machamer came back out looking for the save in the top of the seventh. Unfortunately for Machamer, Auburn showed their muscle in the final three outs of the game. The Tigers scored four runs on six hits in the frame as they took a 4-1 lead headed into the bottom of the inning.
Per usual, the BatCats were down but not out. Ben Aklinski powered a two-out, two-run home run to cut Auburn’s lead to one. But the three-run rally in the top half of the inning proved to be too much for UK as Auburn won the second game of the series and the first game of today’s doubleheader by a score of 4-3.
The Cats will be back in action at 4:30 against Auburn. The rubber match will be broadcast on SECN+ and 630 WLAP.