In a battle of two desperate teams searching for a crucial late season series victory, LSU took the game one advantage with a 8-3 victory over Auburn.
LSU took the lead early with three runs in the third inning, but Auburn slowly but steadily whittled the lead back down to one run. LSU survived that scare and tacked on three more insurance runs late in the game to put the result in safety.
Tre Morgan and Landon Marceaux shined bright, with the Tiger leadoff hitter going 4-for-5 with a triple and two RBI and three hits to start an inning. Marceaux earned yet another quality start, throwing 6.1 innings where he allowed three earned runs off seven hits and allowed just two walks while striking out 11 on 104 pitches.
“The slider was my go-to pitch tonight,” Marceaux said. “I didn’t have the fastball command that I would have wanted, but there are nights where you have to to gut it out and do what you can. Tonight that’s what I had to do. I gave up a couple of homers there and fell behind in counts but they earned that, so credit to them. But I’m happy with the performance, I hit my goal of three or less through six and obviously we as team achieved our goal with a win. At the end of the day, that’s all that matters.”
LSU opened the scoring in the third inning when Alex Milazzo led off the inning with a double down the right field line followed by a single from Tre Morgan and a walk to Dylan Crews to load the bases. Gavin Dugas brought home the game’s first run after getting hit by a pitch and the rest of the runs scored on a single from Cade Doughty and a sacrifice fly from Giovanni DiGiacomo to make it 3-0 LSU.
Auburn retaliated with a run of their own in the bottom of the inning when a leadoff double of their own came around to score on a single, but that was all Auburn could muster.
The two Tigers traded runs in the sixth inning, with LSU scoring a run on a Cade Beloso double and Drew Bianco single and Auburn answering with a solo home run. The home Tigers were able to trim the LSU lead down to one with another home run in the sixth.
But LSU held the line and broke the game wide open in the eighth after the Tiger hitters worked three-straight one-out walks to loaded the bases. Alex Milazzo scored one run on a sacrifice fly from Alex Milazzo before Tre Morgan finished the job with a bases-clearing triple to put LSU ahead 7-3. The Tigers added another run in the ninth with back to back leadoff single from Dugas and Doughty, with Dugas scoring on a sacrifice fly from Jordan Thompson.
“These are the types of games that you come here to play for,” Morgan said. “Hard fought, having to win inning after inning and play your best every inning. These are the games we love.”
Garrett Edwards had a great outing from the bullpen, pitching the final 2.1 innings with only a hit and walk surrendered.
LSU will go for the series win in game two Friday night at 7:00 p.m. The game will be broadcast on the SEC Network proper and on the radio on 98.1 FM.