Four homers lift Columbus State to 21st straight victory

Alabama, Auburn also win; CVCC moves up in national poll

March 18, 2010 

Jason Rogers, Scoop Pharr, Cameron Griffin and Ryan Lewis bashed two-run homers for Columbus State as the Cougars won their 21st straight game 12-1 over Stillman at a wet Ragsdale Field.

CSU’s 15th consecutive home victory was shortened to eight innings when Lewis’ two-run shot invoked the mercy rule. It was his fourth hit of the game among 15 for the Cougars. Griffin had three hits, and Pharr and Eric Weiss added two each.

Jordan Freeman (2-0) pitched five innings of four-hit ball, limiting the Tigers to one run. He walked two and fanned six before giving way to Drew Cox, who allowed two hits and struck out two in two innings. Logan Foster pitched one inning without allowing a baserunner and struck out one.

The Cougars return to action 5 p.m. Friday at Ragsdale Field as they host Georgia College to begin a three-game series. The teams will play a 1 p.m. doubleheader Saturday.

Bama comes back vs. Minnesota

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — On the strength of a five-run seventh inning, No. 21 Alabama notched its fourth come-from-behind victory of the season, defeating the Minnesota Golden Gophers 9-4 Wednesday night at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.

The Crimson Tide trailed 4-3 heading into the bottom half of the seventh inning but exploded for five runs due in large part to three walks and two errors. The comeback marked the largest of the year for Alabama, which trailed 3-0 in the fourth inning.

Adam Windsor picked up his first win of the season with one inning of shutout relief for Alabama (14-1).

Auburn romps over Alabama A&M 18-0

AUBURN, Ala. — Slade Smith did not allow a hit for the first 5 1/3 innings of his first collegiate start and set the tone for one of the more dominating team pitching performances in recent Auburn history as Auburn posted an 18-0 shutout of Alabama A&M on Wednesday night at Plainsman Park. The Auburn staff combined to allow just two hits on the night while the offense took advantage of 15 hits and 13 walks to put up its most runs of the season and complete a two-game sweep of Alabama A&M.

Smith (1-0), who had just one relief appearance spanning two innings coming in, had three innings in which he sat the Alabama A&M (10-6) hitters down in order. After issuing a two-out walk in the first, the right hander retired 11 straight before a defensive miscue allowed Alabama A&M a runner. The freshman finished his six-inning outing with eight strikeouts, which is the third-highest by an Auburn pitcher this season.

Stephen Kohlscheen (1 IP, 1 H, 1 SO), Garrett Bush (1 IP, 1 BB, 1 SO) and Chris O’Neil (1 IP, 1 SO) pitched the final three innings, completing Auburn’s first shutout since a 2-0 win over Kentucky on March 21, 2008 and it’s first two-hitter since February 10, 2006 against Florida State.

With the pitching sizzling, the offense did its’ part by pounding out 15 hits against six Alabama A&M pitchers. Dan Gamache led all Auburn hitters with four hits while Casey McElroy had three. The team also collected 16 RBI, highlighted by home runs off the bats of Kevin Patterson, a two-run shot in the fifth that made it 7-0, Gamache, a two-run shot in the sixth that made it 9-0, and Patrick Savage, a solo homer in the seventh that made it 13-0.

Auburn (11-5) batted around in the seventh inning and sent eight men to the plate in the second, fourth and eighth innings and scored in every inning but the first and third innings.

“We talked about taking care of business. Any time you have midweek games, it’s so important. I thought after the weekend we had (at Arizona State), it was important for our guys to get our confidence going again,” Pawlowski said.

Auburn returns to the diamond on Friday for its conference-season opener at Georgia. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m. EDT and the game will be televised live on CSS.

CVCC climbs national poll

Chattahoochee Valley moved from No. 16 to No. 11 in the National Junior College Athletic Association baseball poll.

CVCC (17-4) has won seven of its past eight games. The Pirates next play a three-game series at Central Alabama, starting 2 p.m. Friday, followed by a 1 p.m. doubleheader Saturday.

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