With SEC play just under two weeks away, Auburn has seven games in seven days, and the non-conference test began with a Tuesday night matchup against UAB. The in-state rivals, coached by former Auburn great Casey Dunn, have struggled as of late and put up a fight, but the Tigers were able to shut down the UAB offense and get some hits of their own, winning 4-1.
Almost all of Auburn’s offensive production came from Bryson Ware, who continued to build off of the stellar weekend series vs. Lipscomb. Ware had three of the Tigers' four hits, raising his average, which is already well above .500. After three-straight scoreless innings from both teams to start the game, Auburn picked things up in the bottom of the fourth with an error in the outfield getting Ike Irish on base. Then Ware, like so many times during the weekend, provided the instant offense with a two-run home run.
Ware had generated the only hit of the game up to this point, but the two-run homer finally got Auburn on the board while the shutout continued. Cole Foster's double in the fifth brought Brody Moss home, and then a Bobby Pierce sac-fly brought Ware home in the sixth, ending the scoring for the Tigers in the contest.
UAB would not register a hit until the eighth inning, and eventually got on the board in the ninth, but it was too little too late.
The Blazers put up eight pitchers against the Tigers’ bats, while Butch Thompson rolled out the duo of Tommy Vail and Chase Allsup. Vail pitched 5.2 innings, with no hits, two walks and eight strikeouts. Vail is now 2-0 on the season and has yet to give up a run in 13.1 innings pitched. Alssup followed Vail with 3.1 innings on the mound, giving up three hits and one run while securing three strikeouts and the save, his second of the year.
Ware finished the night going 3-for-3 at the plate, extending his hit streak to 13 games, though he still has 18 more games to go before he would catch Casey Dunn, who had a program-record 31-game hitting streak in 1997. He is certainly making an impact at the plate, with seven home runs in 41 at-bats this season. Ware had just seven home runs during all 232 of his at-bats in his first two seasons on the Plains.
Auburn will continue to wrap up its non-conference slate with another midweek clash. The Tigers will travel to Jacksonville for a Wednesday night matchup with Jacksonville State. The first pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. CST and the game will be broadcast on ESPN+.
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