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Plainsman Park - Auburn, AL

No. 9 Tigers mercy rule UIC to sweep series

51 days ago
Auburn Athletics
Photo: Auburn Athletics

AUBURN, Ala. - No. 9 Auburn completed its four-game sweep of Illinois-Chicago with a 14-0 win in seven innings Sunday at Plainsman Park.

The Tigers used an 11-run fourth inning in which they sent 15 batter to the plate to blow the game open. It marked the second time in the last seven games dating back to the finale of the Chapel Hill Super Regional Auburn has scored 11 or more runs in an inning.

"That second and third time through the lineup was where we made some adjustments," head coach Butch Thompson said. "We just kept passing it down. Our guys are a pretty close group right now. The balls were hit hard to center field, right field - hard line drives where we had really good swings. A couple balls fell, a couple balls got through, and the guys just kept being interested."

Meanwhile, Auburn's pitching combination of Bailey Horn, Brooks Fuller and Hayden Mullins turned in the team's first shutout of the season and struck out a combined 11 batters while issuing just two walks.

"We're really deep," Horn said of the pitching staff. "We've got a lot of arms this year. A really talented club. Everyone is doing their job. I have a lot of faith in my teammates, and we're going to keep rolling through."

Conor Davis got the scoring started with a sacrifice fly in the first inning, marking his third sac fly and fourth RBI of the weekend.

As Horn (1-0, 0.00) held UIC in check on the mound - allowing just one hit with two walks and seven strikeouts - the Tigers extended the advantage to 12 with the aforementioned big inning. Matt Scheffler doubled to left-center to score a pair before Garrett Farguhar drove in two more a batter later. Brody Moore and Tyler Miller extended the lead to 7-0 with one RBI apiece, and Woley ripped his fourth double of the weekend to drive in two more. John Samuel Shenker came through with a RBI single, and Farquahar finished the explosion with his second two-RBI single of the inning.

The Tigers capped off the scoring in the contest on a run that scored on a wild pitch in the sixth and a RBI single from Brayton Brown in the seventh. The game was then called due to a travel curfew.

Eleven different players totaled 13 hits for Auburn, marking its third game this weekend in double-digits. Shenker and Farquhar led the way with two hits apiece, while Mason Greer turned in his first career hit with a double in the seventh.

"I think for the most part in this four game series our guys evaluated the strike zone well," Thompson added. "They swung at strikes and they took balls. Whenever you're doing a good job of evaluating the strike zone and guys are interested in trying to get their best swings off and everybody is locked in here together as one. I just thought we played really good offense as a group."

On the mound, Fuller faced the minimum and struck out three batters in 2.0 innings of relief. Mullins turned in a scoreless inning of relief with a strikeout in his Auburn debut.

Auburn continues its stretch of 23 straight home games with a midweek matchup against Oakland Tuesday at 5 p.m. CT.