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Doubledays take series at State College with 7-2 win Sunday

After their first loss in five games on Saturday, the Auburn Doubledays (7-8) took the rubber match of a three-game series with the State College Spikes (10-6) by a final score of 7-2 on Sunday night at Medlar Field. Center fielder Rafael Bautista had another impressive night for Auburn, going 3-5 with an RBI and two runs scored.

Unlike Saturday’s game two of the series, it did not take long for Auburn to get on the board on Sunday against State College starter Scott Politz. Bautista got things started immediately with a high-hopping ground ball in front of Politz on the mound, which allowed the speedy Bautista to reach on an infield single. Jose Sanchez followed immediately behind him with a double into deep left-center field before a Politz wild pitch with Jeremy Ydens at the plate plated Bautista and gave Auburn a 1-0 lead.

The Doubledays didn’t stop there. Anthony Peroni led off the top of the second by sending a hard liner to center field. Once it hurt the grass, it took a nasty hop over the head of State College center fielder Jonatan Machado, allowing Peroni to pull it to second with a leadoff double. After a picture-perfect Jake Randa sacrifice bunt moved Peroni to third, Colton Pouge sent a flyball to right field, advancing Peroni home on the sacrifice fly and increasing the lead to 2-0.

The Auburn advantage doubled in the fourth. After a Peroni walk and a pair of outs from Randa and Pogue, Alu sent a double into center field, scoring Pogue, who had stayed on base after a fielder’s choice. One batter later, Bautista lined a single into left that brought Alu in to score from second and gave the DDays a 4-0 lead.

State College responded in the bottom half of the inning against Adrian Martinez who had come into the game in the third when starter Carlos Romero exited the game after being hit with a line drive. With one out in the inning, Matt Duce hammered a single into center field. After an Andrew Warner strikeout and with Donivan Williams at the plate, Duce moved up to second base on a wild pitch from Martinez. Williams proceeded to walk in that at-bat to put runners at first and second for David Vinsky who was making his New York-Penn League debut. The Cardinals’ 15th round pick shot a grounder back to the mound where Martinez fielded it but sent his throw wide of the bag at first, allowing Duce to score and cut the Auburn lead to 4-1.

The Spikes tacked on another in the seventh against LHP Nelson Galindez. After Galindez retired the first two batters of the inning, Carlos Soto slapped a triple into deep center field. In the next at-bat Duce drove Soto home with a single into right to shrink the lead to 4-2.

Auburn got that run back in the eighth though. After Hector Villalobos got the first two outs of the inning, Bautista slapped his third hit of the night into right field. That spelled the end of the day for Villalobos and brough Junior Gonzalez into the game. With Sanchez at the plate, Bautista stole second base and Duce’s throw was errant, allowing him to move up to third on the play. Sanchez then proceeded to single into left, bringing Bautista in to score and increasing the Auburn lead to 5-2.

More insurance was to be had in the ninth and it came in a big way. Onix Vega struck out to begin the inning but got on base when the third strike of his at-bat got away from Duce behind the dish. After a J.T. Arruda walk, both Vega and Arruda moved up 90 feet on flyout from Peroni. One batter later, Randa demolished a triple to center field to clear the bases and give the DDays a 7-2 lead.

The Doubledays return home for the first of a six-game homestand against the West Virginia Black Bears at 7:00 p.m. on Monday night at Falcon Park. RHP Rafael Gomez is set to toe the slab for Auburn opposite a pitcher to be announced for West Virginia. You can listen LIVE on Radio beginning at 6:45 pm.

By JD Raucci / Auburn Doubledays