TROY, Ala. - No. 20 Auburn jumped out to an early lead and never looked back in an 11-4 win at Troy Tuesday night.
The Tigers matched a season high with 17 hits, including multiple hit efforts from five players, led by three-hit nights from Blake Rambusch, Kason Howell, Brooks Carlson and Brody Moore
. "Everybody was locked in and had some great at bats," head coach Butch Thompson said. "Up and down the lineup, it was a good bounce-back for us. We talked about being frustrated, flushing that and resetting, This was a good reset and a good start to the week."
Auburn (33-16) scored 10 of its 11 runs in the second through fourth innings, plating two in the second, four in the third and four more in the fourth.
Rambusch recorded his team-best 23rd multi-hit game of the season and collected his 200th career hit with a leadoff single in the third.
"This was a cool little milestone to get to and something I've been working towards for a long time," Rambusch said. "I was just trying to hit something hard up the middle."
Howell turned in his eighth game with three hits this season, matching a career high in the category, and drove in a pair of runs.
"Me and Rambusch try to get on base so that Sonny (DiChiara) can do his thing," Howell said. "Hitting balls hard is always good, but we just want to get on base to get some runs."
Auburn struck first with a pair of runs in the second inning. Moore reached on an infield single and moved to third on a ground-rule double from Mason Land before scoring on a wild pitch. Nate LaRue then drove in Land on a sacrifice fly to right field.
The Tigers continued the scoring with five straight hits to start the third. After back-to-back singles from Rambusch and Howell, the big blow come on Sonny DiChiara's 16th homer of the season, which made it a 5-0 ballgame. It marked the third straight game DiChiara has homered. After a couple more hits from Bobby Peirce and Carlson, Land drove in a run on a ground out to extend the lead to six.
Auburn starter Jordan Armstrong needed just eight pitches to retire the Trojans in order in the third, and the Auburn offense continued to produce in the fourth. Cole Foster drew a leadoff walk, moved to third on a double from Rambusch and both scored on a base hit up the middle from Howell. After Troy went to the bullpen, Carlson and Moore drove in two more to make it 10-0.
Armstrong retired 10 straight batters from the second inning until recording the first out in the fifth, but ultimately ran into some trouble in the frame. The Trojans got on the scoreboard on a single, two hit-by-pitches and a walk before Konner Copeland relieved Armstrong with the bases loaded and one out in the fifth. Two more Trojans came in to score on a one-out single, but Copeland got out of the inning with a strikeout and lineout.
The Tigers got one of the runs back on a two-out single from LaRue in the sixth, and Troy responded with a solo homer in the seventh to get to the eventual final of 11-4.
Chase Isbell (1-1, 7.71) earned his first win in an Auburn uniform after putting up a scoreless inning in the sixth.
Tyler Drabick took the mound to start the seventh, and Brooks Fuller and Blake Burkhalter each turned in 1.1 scoreless frames. Burkhalter hit the first batter he faced but retired the next four with a pair of strikeouts.
The Tigers return to Plainsman Park for the final weekend at home, hosting rival Alabama (27-22, 10-14 SEC) Friday through Sunday.