Home runs from Damek Tomscha and Ryan Tella led Auburn to a come-from-behind, 6-5 win over Alabama State on a chilly Wednesday night at Plainsman Park.
The Tigers (11-6) battled back from a two-run deficit in the fourth and a one-run hole after five innings to notch their fifth-straight win, avenging an earlier loss this season to Alabama State (15-5).
"We've let them come into our yard and get the lead, and they play loose when they get the lead," Auburn head coach Sunny Golloway said. "That's why I thought Tella's home run was really big.
"Offensively, I think we are swinging the bat better. We are driving the ball. Our slugging percentage has really, really gotten better, and that's been big for us. Before, it was taking four or five singles to score a run."
Tomscha homered for the third game in a row with his fifth round-tripper of the season, leading off a four-run fourth for the Tigers. Tella's first homer of the year came in the seventh inning to tie the game. Both were solo shots and marked the first time this year for Auburn to hit two home runs in a game.
Jay Wade (2-0) remained unblemished on the year, pitching three hitless, scoreless innings of relief to pick up the win. Wade has yet to allow a run over 9.2 innings in six appearances.
Alabama State took a 2-0 lead in the fourth after the Tigers' first two errors of the night and a pair of RBI hits from Richard Gonzalez and Emmanuel Marrero. But Tomscha's homer cut the deficit in half, starting a four run rally that gave the Tigers the lead.
A base hit from Jordan Ebert was followed by an RBI double from Dan Glevenyak to tie the game at 2-2, then Blake Logan drove home Glevenyak with an RBI single to make it 3-2. Two batters later, a run-scoring single from Damon Haecker brought home Logan to give Auburn a 4-2 lead as the Tigers batted around but left the bases loaded.
The Hornets, though, fought right back for three runs in the fifth, sending nine men to the plate in the frame. Two more Auburn errors contributed to the scoring as two of the three ASU runs were unearned. Richard Amion made it a one-run game with a one-out, solo home run, then the Hornets took the lead when a rundown between third and home went awry, allowing a run to score to tie the game. A two-out infield single with a runner at third brought home another run, giving ASU the lead back at 5-4.
But Tella's blast on the first pitch of the seventh inning tied the score at 5-5. Connor Short then walked, moved to second on a balk, and scored on a pinch-hit RBI single from Daniel Robert to give Auburn the lead.
Trey-Cochran Gill pitched a scoreless ninth to pick up his first save. Glevenyak and Haecker each had two hits on the night to lead the Tigers.