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Nine-run fourth powers Auburn past Georgia Tech

2570 days ago
Auburn Athletics
Photo: Auburn Athletics

ATLANTA - For the second time in two games, Auburn baseball used a big inning to power its way to a victory, this time a 9-run fourth to drop No. 22 Georgia Tech 14-3 on Tuesday at Russ Chandler Stadium.

"The last four days have been consistent offense," Auburn head coach Butch Thompson said. "Andrew Mitchell didn't have his best stuff, but he just battled tonight. To give us a chance to go on the road to beat a team like Georgia Tech is positive. With our lineup, I could really talk about four or five guys and that's the way you want it. Everybody is passing up and down the lineup and we are going to try and keep this going for as long as we possibly can."

Auburn (9-8) sent 13 men to the plate in the top of the fourth and scored nine runs to push its lead to 12-2. The Tigers piled up eight hits in the frame. Grier and Jackson Burgreen had the big knocks with a 2-run single and a 2-run double.

Starter Andrew Mitchell allowed three runs in five innings with a career-high nine strikeouts. He improved to 3-0 on the season.

Grier led off the third inning with a double to extend his hitting streak to 18 games, a new career high. Joshua Palacios followed with his second home run of the season to give Auburn the lead. Niko Buentello followed with a solo shot, his fourth, two batters later for a 3-0 lead.

Palacios has reached base in all 17 games. He was 3-for-5 with three runs scored and two RBI.

Georgia Tech (12-4) got two runs back in the bottom half, but the Tigers responded in a big way in the fourth.

With the 14 runs scored on Tuesday, Auburn has now scored 10 or more runs seven times through 17 games in 2016 after posting double-digit scoring only six times in 62 games in 2015.

Cole Pitts (1-1) took the loss with six runs (five earned) in three-plus innings pitched.

Kel Johnson had two doubles for the Jackets. Joey Bart had two RBI.

The Tigers added two runs in the eighth with Grier coming in to score on a wild pitch. He's scored 27 runs on the season. Buentello added a RBI single, his 29th of season, to plate Palacios and make it 14-3.

Buentello reached base six times with a homer, two RBI, two walks and a hit by pitch. Cody Nulph added three hits.

Marc Frazier pitched three scoreless relief innings with a season-high five strikeouts. Daniel Sprinkle finished the game with a scoreless ninth.

Auburn is in action next on Friday when it hosts No. 2 Texas A&M at Plainsman Park to open SEC play.