Jon Luke Jacobs allowed just three hits over six innings in his first SEC start of the season as Auburn bounced back from a one-run loss on Friday to down Vanderbilt, 5-2, on Saturday afternoon at Hawkins Field. The win improved Auburn’s record to 19-15, 7-7 SEC while Vanderbilt fell to 15-20, 5-9 SEC.
“You can’t say enough about Jon Luke Jacobs. He got us into the seventh inning allowing three hits,” Auburn Head Coach John Pawlowski said. “Today was one of our better defensive games (of the season). We had 13 groundball outs. Creede Simpson and Dan Glevenyak had some nice plays up the middle and then (catcher) Blake Austin threw out Tony Kemp.”
Jacobs (5-0), who was pushed into the weekend rotation following a season-ending injury to Will Kendall last weekend, held Vanderbilt it hitless until there were two outs in the third and never allowed two hits in an inning. Issuing four walks, he relied heavily on the defense to do a lot of the work, getting nine ground ball outs, including an inning-ending double play in the first.
“We needed to bounce back after last night and the way the last four conference games have gone for us,” Jacobs said. “The defense played really well today and all around we played really well. We need to keep that rolling into tomorrow.”
Cullen Wacker finished the game 3-for-4 with a pair of RBIs for Auburn, driving in two with a first-inning, two-out, two-run double that gave Auburn a lead it would never relinquish.
A Garrett Cooper RBI groundout in the fifth scored Dan Glevenyak to push the lead to 3-0 for Jacobs before he turned things over to Slade Smith and Dillon Ortman out of the bullpen. Ortman would get the final six outs to earn his first save of the season.
The only runs Vanderbilt would push across came on one swing of the bat as Connor Castellano hit a two-run, pinch-hit home run off of Smith in the seventh to make it a 3-2 game, with one run being charged to Jacobs and one to Smith.
Auburn tacked on a pair of insurance runs in the ninth as Jay Gonzalez singled, stole second, went to third on a Blake Austin single and scored on Glevenyak’s successful safety squeeze play to make it 4-2. Bobby Andrews, pinch running for Austin, then stole third and scored on an error by Vanderbilt catcher Spencer Navin trying to get him at third for the final margin.
Vanderbilt starter Tyler Beede (1-4) allowed three runs on nine hits in seven innings, issuing a walk and striking out six while reliever Drew VerHagen allowed two runs on two hits in 1 1/3 innings.
Auburn will attempt to win its fourth SEC series of the season on Sunday when it starts Daniel Koger (2-2). Vanderbilt will start Kevin Ziomek (2-6).
Courtesy AU Media Relations