Auburn, Ala. – The 25th-ranked Auburn softball team combined to score
25 runs on 29 hits in a doubleheader sweep of Mississippi Valley State Saturday, winning game one 11-3 and game two 14-1.
Auburn improved to 34-14 overall with the two wins, while Mississippi Valley State fell to 22-21. Auburn returns to action March 29-April 1 at home against No. 3 Georgia.
"Obviously I'm happy for our seniors today," Auburn head coach Tina Deese said. "We honored our seniors before the game and I know the team wanted to come out and really play well for them and we did that. We had everything going offensively and this was a good way to put the last week behind us and get ready for Georgia next weekend."
In game two, Auburn scored five runs in the first inning and seven runs in the second inning to cruise to a 14-1 victory. Auburn had a season highs in runs and 16 hits in the game. The 14 runs and 16 hits were the most by Auburn since scoring 15 runs and registering 18 hits against Jacksonville State on May 22, 2010 in the NCAA Atlanta Regional.
Lauren Schmalz improved to 13-5 with the complete-game victory.
Schmalz allowed one run, earned, on four hits with one walk 10 strikeouts in five innings of work.
Kimberly Spivey started and took the loss to fall to 13-12.
Spively allowed 14 runs, 12 earned, on 16 hits with two walks and two strikeouts in four innings of work.
Kyndall White ignited Auburn's five-run first inning with an RBI double. White's double to right scored Kelsey Cartwright (single) and moved Lauren Guzman (error) to third. Kelley Smiley followed with a double to left that scored Guzman and White to give Auburn a 3-0 lead.
Amber Harrison followed with a single back up the middle to score Smiley and push the Tigers' lead to 4-0. With two outs, Katie Colton doubled to the corner in left to score Harrison and make it a 5-0 game.
In the second inning, the Tigers scored seven runs on seven hits, a walk, a hit by pitch and two MSVU errors. White, Smiley, Caitlin Schultze and Caitlin Stangl each had RBI hits in the inning as the Tigers broke the game open taking a commanding 12-0 lead.
Morgan Murphy gave the Tigers a 13-0 lead in the third inning.
Smiley doubled with one out and came in to score on a two-out single to center by Murphy.
Auburn made it 14-0 in the fourth inning when Guzman singled home Liana Wuchte, who walked and moved to third on a double by Cartwright.
Mississippi Valley State plated a run in the top of the fifth inning on Alexandria Robertson's RBI single.
For the game, Cartwright and Smiley each had three hits while Guzman White and Harrison had two hits apiece. Smiley's three hits tied her career high, while her three RBI were a career best. Of the 13 Auburn players that had a plate appearance, 12 reached base with nine recording at least one hit.
In game one, Kelsey Cartwright drove in three runs while Lauren Guzman and Elizabeth Eisterhold had two RBI each as Auburn won 11-3.
Angel Bunner started and earned the win to improve to 12-5.
Bunner did not allow a run or issue a walk while scattering two hits and striking out eight. Alyssia Palomino threw one-third an inning in relief, allowing three runs, all earned, on two hits with two walks and one strikeout.
Taylor Pleasant (6-5) started and took the loss, allowing eight runs, all earned, on four hits in one inning of work.
Auburn opened the game by scoring eight runs in the first inning. Guzman gave Auburn a 2-0 lead with a bases-loaded single. Morgan Estell and Cartwright each walked and were followed by Kyndall White who loaded the bases with no outs on an infield single. Guzman followed with a single to center that scored Estell and Cartwright.
Amber Harrison was then hit by a pitch to load the bases again.
Following a fielder's choice out at home, Elizabeth Eisterhold singled sharply through the left side of the infield to score Guzman and Harrison for a 4-0 Auburn lead. Following a strikeout, Caitlin Stangl was hit by a pitch to load the bases for the third time. Estell followed with a four-pitch walk to force Kelley Smiley home and push the lead to
5-0. Cartwright followed with a double to center to clear the bases
and make it an 8-0 game.
Palomino relieved Bunner to start the third inning and loaded the bases on two singles and a walk. With one out, Palomino walked Alexandria Robertson to force in a run to make it an 8-1 game. Palomino then hit Nicole Burr on the first pitch to force in another run and make it an 8-2 game. Bunner re-entered the game and forced Taylor Pleasant into a fielder's choice, producing an out at second, but scoring another run, making it an 8-3 lead for Auburn. Bunner ended the rally when she fanned Shana Ladner on a swinging third strike.
Katie Colton gave the Tigers a 9-3 lead with an RBI double in the fourth inning. Harrison was hit by a pitch and Smiley singled to put runners at second and first, respectively. Colton followed with a double off the wall in center to plate Harrison and give AU a six-run edge.
With Estell at the plate, Pear delivered a wild pitch that scored Smiley to give Auburn a 10-3 lead.
The Tigers took advantage of an MVSU error to score the game-ending run in the bottom of the sixth. With two outs, Estell singled and moved to third on a single by Maris Medina. Center fielder Ashley Hobbs threw wildly to third, attempting to make a play on Estell.
The ball skipped into the Auburn dugout, allowing Estell to score the game-ending run.