The third time proved to be the charm for Auburn High Baseball as they win the 2018 7A State Championship in two games over Hewitt-Trussville after making the state championship series for three years in a row. In Friday night’s game at Paterson Field, Hewitt-Trussville struck first on an RBI single by Tyler Mauldin in the fourth to draw first blood and take a 1-0 lead. Then the Tigers offense came to life against Huskies starter Carson Skipper in the sixth inning with a double by senior Teddy Benda, followed by a sacrifice bunt and a couple of Hewitt-Trussville errors to score two. Later in the inning, Senior Clayton Phillips brought in two more on an RBI single to push the lead up to 4-1. Four runs was plenty for Auburn starter Brooks Fuller, who went the complete game giving up just four hits, one earned run, and striking out eight.
On Saturday the series moved to Riverwalk Stadium where Auburn started usual game one starter Drew Jennings to face Hewitt-Trussville’s Michael Fowler. However, Fowler’s outing was short as he was removed from the ball game after the Tigers threatened to score by loading the bases in the first. Both teams’ offenses were kept in check during the pitching duel until the third. Auburn Senior Garrett Morris led off the third with a walk, then stole second base and advanced to third on a Griffin Speaks infield single. Auburn Junior Jackson Arnold brought in Morris on a sacrifice fly that ultimately became the difference in the game. Drew Jennings stranded runners in scoring position in both the sixth and seventh innings to lead to a complete game shutout to give the Tigers their first State Baseball title since 2010. Jennings was also named 7A Series MVP after the game for his complete game in which he only gave up three hits, two walks, and struck out six.
Here is Scott Bagwell’s call of the final out of the 2018 7A State Baseball Championship on ESPN 106.7:
After a less than stellar performance in game one that led to a 8-2 defeat, Auburn High shuffled their lineup and won game two by a 11-2 final behind a strong pitching performance. Senior Brooks Fuller went five innings giving up just two earned runs and six strikeouts to help force a game three. Senior Clayton Phillips paced the Tigers offensively, as he went two for two with a run scored and two RBI.
On Saturday, Auburn finds themselves in a winner-take-all game three for the second time in this year’s 7A Playoffs. Last week, Head Coach Matt Cimo entrusted Senior Teddy Benda with the baseball in game three and earned the win-or-go-home victory for the Tigers. Benda is expected to make the game three start once again on Saturday.
Scott Bagwell will have game three coverage live from Theodore, Alabama beginning at 1:50 on ESPN 106.7, espnau.com, and on the ESPN 106.7 app.
After splitting Friday night’s double header, Auburn High School came won the winner-take-all game three by a 10-5 final score. Auburn High Senior Teddy Benda got the start and the win for the Tigers going 6.2 innings, giving up just three hits, five runs, and striking out eight. Senior catcher Carson Plan finished the game three for four with a couple of RBI and Senior second baseman Tanner Jones went two for three with a two RBI and two runs scored.
Next, the Tigers will travel to Theodore High School for round two of the 7A playoffs. Scott Bagwell will have the complete series coverage live from Mobile on ESPN 106.7, espnau.com, and on the ESPN 106.7 app.
Auburn High Head Coach Matt Cimo after the series win:
Auburn High Head Coach Matt Cimo gives his thoughts after his team split the double header in the first round of the 7A playoffs against McGill-Toolen. The split forces a winner-take all game on Saturday to see who will move on to face the winner of the Enterprise-Theodore series.
Airtime will be 12:45 on ESPN 106.7 and first pitch will be at 1:00 with Scott Bagwell and Riley Hubbard from the campus of Auburn High School. The game will also be streaming online at espnau.com and on the ESPN 106.7 app.
The time has finally arrived for playoff baseball for Auburn High School, as they will battle McGill-Toolen in a double header on 5:00 on Friday night. The series is a best of three- two will be played on Friday night and a third will be played on Saturday at 1:00 if necessary.
The biggest impact player for the Yellow Jackets is their game one starter Chandler Best, who threw a perfect game against Smiths Station earlier in the year. Auburn High will likely counter with Senior lefty Drew Jennings who earned a win and went the complete game in both of his last two starts. The pitching matchup will be a major vocal point in game one, but the Tigers offence has also shown their toughness over the last couple of series.Senior Garrett Morris made headlines last Thursday (4/19) when he hit a go-ahead three run home run against Smiths Station that ultimately made the Tigers area champions.
ESPN 106.7 will have coverage of the entire series from Auburn High School starting at 5:00 on Friday night. Scott Bagwell and Riley Hubbard will have the call on ESPN 106.7, espnau.com, and on the ESPN 106.7 app.
ESPN 106.7’s Riley Hubbard caught up with Auburn High Head baseball Coach Matt Cimo to get his thoughts before game one:
The mission was accomplished on Thursday night for the Auburn High Baseball team as they swept area foe Smiths Station at home to become champions of 7A area four. Smiths Station struck first in the top of the fifth on an RBI single by Dalton Herrelson to take the early 1-0 lead. Panthers starter Clay Weatherly had a no-hitter going in the sixth, but after two straight walks, Auburn Senior Garrett Morris broke up the no-hit bid with a three-run home run to put the Tigers out in front 3-1. Smiths Station answered in the seventh with another RBI single from Dalton Herrelson, but the tying run was left stranded at third to lead to a 3-2 Tiger victory. Auburn starter Brooks Fuller picked up the win for his six innings of work in which he gave up two unearned runs, then Jackson Arnold pitched the seventh inning to pick up the save. The Tigers then went on to take the potential tiebreaker game despite the game not having any playoff implications 14-4.
With wins in both games one and two made Auburn the champions of 7A area four, and the area championship allows Auburn to host in round one against 7A area two runner-up McGill-Toolen in round one of the 7A Playoffs on April 27th and 28th. Scott Bagwell and Riley Hubbard will have complete coverage of the round one series from Auburn High school on ESPN 106.7, espnau.com, and on the ESPN 106.7 app.
Here’s what Auburn High Head Coach Matt Cimo had to say about the Tigers capturing the area championship after the game:
Coming into Wednesday night’s series opener against area foe Smiths Station, the Auburn High baseball team knew that they needed to win if they had any hope of hosting round one of the 7A playoffs and they got the job done on the road. Smiths Station struck first in the third on two RBI singles by Dalton Gunter and Ryan Bradley to make it 2-0. Then the Tigers struck for their first run of the night in the fifth by scoring Ryan Lambert on a wild pitch. After Lambert cut the lead to one, Garrett Morris singled home Clayton Phillips and Jackson Arnold doubled home Morris to take a 3-2 lead. Auburn tacked on an insurance run in the seventh to make it 4-2, then the Tigers would go on to win by that score. Both starters went the complete game as Smiths Station’s Jerry Dale Bowman went 7.0 innings giving up ten hits, four earned runs, and striking out six. Auburn’s Drew Jennings went 7.0 innings giving up just five hits, two earned runs, and striking out four. Jennings also went the complete game in a 2-1 victory against Central-Phenix City earlier this month to make him a perfect 2-0 in area play.
Auburn High must win game two on Thursday to host McGill-Toolen in round one of the 7A playoffs. If they lose, they will travel to Fairhope for the first round. The Tigers will look to complete their sweep of the Panthers on Thursday afternoon at home. Scott Bagwell and Blake Ramsey will have coverage of the double header from the campus of Auburn High School beginning at 4:30 on ESPN 106.7, espnau.com, and on the ESPN 106.7 app.
There is good news and bad news for the Auburn High Baseball team- the good news is that because Smiths Station beat Central two games to none (Central won the tie breaker), Auburn High is officially in the AHSAA 7A Playoffs. The bad news is that they must beat Smiths Station two games to none if they want to win area four and host in round one of the AHSAA Playoffs. Last season, the Tigers beat the Panthers two games to none to win the area, which allowed them to host Mary Montgomery High at home. If Auburn is unable to win both games against Smiths Station, they will become the area four runner-up and will travel to either Fairhope or McGill-Toolen depending on who wins area two.
Although he is not the confirmed, Auburn will most likely send their usual game one starter to the mound Drew Jennings. In his last start against Central-Phenix City, Jennings went a complete game 7.0 innings giving up just one run on three hits striking out five. Game one will be played Wednesday night at Smiths Station, then game two and the tiebreaker game will be played at Auburn on Thursday Scott Bagwell and Riley Hubbard will have coverage beginning at 5:00 on ESPN 106.7, espnau.com, and on the ESPN 106.7 app.
One of the best Auburn High Baseball players in history returns home to battle the Auburn University Tigers.
This weekend’s baseball series in Plainsman Park featuring Auburn hosting the Mississippi State Bulldogs will have a strong local tie. Rowdey Jordan, a freshman for Mississippi State has been a staple for Auburn High Baseball the past several years and has taken the next step in his baseball career by moving to Starkville.
Despite Jordan being a big story line in this weekend’s series, he will be focused on the games and try to treat it as a normal and routine road series.
“The only real big difference is that I have a lot of friends there and it’s my hometown,” he said. “Other than that, we’re going to try to treat it the same and not make it bigger than what it is.”
When asked about how he is preparing for an Auburn team that has lost four straight games, Jordan said it’s all about momentum.
“I think our preparation is to keep our momentum from this past weekend”, the freshman Bulldog said. “We’ve gotten better every weekend and we’re playing better so just keep the momentum. We’re going to pitch well, play defense well and we’ll hopefully we’ll be able to hit. Just get after them and attack all three days and just let it play out.”
Jordan has made plays and has been a key part of Mississippi State’s success this season. The former Auburn high school standout hit a grand slam earlier in the season against New Mexico State.
— MSU Baseball ⚾ (@HailStateBB) March 8, 2018
“We had a scouting report,” Jordan said. “I think it was 86 to 88, it was just attack, attack the fast ball. It was bases loaded, he’s going to try to get ahead in the count so he’s going to attack you, so attack him back. I just had a good swing on a good pitch.”
Many people close to the Auburn High School baseball program say that Jordan is the best baseball player to come through AHS Head Coach Matt Cimo’s program.
“His presence in leadership out there is why kids looked up to him,” Cimo said. “Rowdey was a kid who always came through at big times. He had those qualities you didn’t have to coach. He was just a great player to have around.”
Jordan is aware of the honor and the high praise.
“That really means a lot because there’s been some great players that have come through Auburn High,” Jordan said. “Especially Andrew Naismith, who was really good when he was there and Ryan Watson as well. We had a lot of guys that was really good, so it means a lot and I’m very thankful to just have a good career there. It was real fun.”
Over Jordan’s three-year career at Auburn High School, Jordan carried a .411 batting average, recorded 155 hits, 145 runs, 96 RBI, 39 doubles, and 21 home runs.
Jordan was on ESPN 106.7’s The Lunch Break earlier this week. Below is the complete interview.