From Auburn Media Relations:
MONTGOMERY, Ala. - The Auburn baseball team is a perfect four-for-four in the Capital City Classic against rival Alabama after claiming an 8-3 win on Tuesday night at Riverwalk Stadium. Game MVP Dan Glevenyak was 3-for-4 with a home run and three RBIs to pace the Auburn offense, which jumped out to a three-run lead after one and never looked back in improving to 8-6 on the season.
"Our offense has done a really good job of putting ourselves in position to score some runs," Auburn Head Coach John Pawlowski said. "The first inning we had bases loaded and two outs and Danny Glevenyak came up with a big two-out base hit, Zach Alvord came up with a big two-out base hit and those things really gave us some early momentum."
Given a three-run cushion after the first, Auburn starting pitcher Jon Luke Jacobs (3-0) went 6 2/3 innings, scattering five hits and four walks while striking out six, getting touched for a pair of runs in the third inning and little else. In three of his six-plus innings he set the Alabama batters down in order, aided by a double play in the second and a pair of strike outs in the fifth, upping his season strike out total to a team-high 22.
"When you have a guy like Jon Luke Jacobs; a lot of composure, a lot of poise out there, there was a calmness about him and he executed pitch after pitch tonight," Pawlowski said.
"I just went out there and tried to fill the zone up. We have some great players behind me so I tried to get the ball on the ground. I threw three pitches for strikes, which was a big key for me," Jacobs said. "The way our season has been going so far we have been up-and-down, here-and-there so this was a big game for us. This helped us see how we measure up against a SEC opponent."
Glevenyak, who came into the game on a six-game hitting streak, continued his torrid pace, singling in two runs in the first to put Auburn up 2-0 with two outs, homering to left in the fifth to go up 5-2 and singling to start the seventh. He also reached on an error in the eighth, which allowed Auburn to pad the score with an extra two runs in the frame that made it 8-2.
"I was seeing the ball great in BP and in the cages so I knew I could trust my hands and my swing today. I got some balls I could handle and I put the barrel on some pretty good," Glevenyak said.
Creede Simpson finished the night 2-for-4 with three runs scored, scoring in the first on Glevenyak's single, in the fourth on a Ryan Tella single which made it 4-2 and again in the eighth when Zach Alvord drew a bases-loaded walk. His first-inning single extended his streak of reaching base safely to 18 dating to last season.
Up 5-2 in the seventh, Jacobs walked the bases loaded, prompting Pawlowski to call Justin Bryant out of the bullpen with two outs in the inning. The senior closer induced a groundout to Simpson at second, who made a nice play on a ball to his left, to end the inning. After working around a two-out single in the eighth, he would be touched for a single run in the ninth following a leadoff triple, spoiling what was a three strike out performance over 2 1/3 innings, but still earning Auburn's first save of the season.
Alabama (5-7) starter Spencer Turnbull (0-1) suffered the loss, allowing four runs in 3 2/3 innings.
Auburn stole four bases on the night, two by Simpson, to give it 44 on the season, which matches what the team did in 58 games last season.
Tella was 3-for-5 with a double and extended his hitting streak to eight.
Alabama's two third-inning runs came on a Taylor Dugas RBI single and a spoiled double steal, though Brett Booth was able to score before Dugas was tagged out in a rundown.
Auburn returns home for its final non-conference weekend beginning Friday at 6pm against Belmont.