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‘Staying in the fight’


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‘Staying in the fight’: No. 14 Auburn ready for No. 2 Stanford in CWS

Auburn University Athletics
3 minutes

OMAHA, Neb. – One of only seven teams still in contention for the national championship, No. 14 Auburn practiced Sunday at Bellevue East High School before Monday's matchup with No. 2 Stanford.

 

  "The man, the woman, the team that refuses to quit is hard to beat," Auburn head coach Butch Thompson said. "Staying in the fight is a message you hope this club understands. This is one step at a time. We've got make a grind here."

  Consistency – never losing more than wo in a row over the course of a 63-game season – and not beating itself, Thompson says, have defined the Tigers in 2022.

  Auburn lost its opening game Saturday to Ole Miss, falling 5-1 while producing only four hits.

  "We couldn't do enough offensively to have a chance to be in the ballgame," Thompson said. "They'll get to right that ship tomorrow, hopefully, and play good offense. We didn't beat ourselves necessarily, but we sure didn't do enough to win a ballgame yesterday."

  To reach the championship series, Auburn will need to win four games in four days, starting Monday with Stanford.

  While that represents a daunting task, the Tigers take confidence from having already produced a four-game win streak to start this tournament, sweeping the Auburn Regional and taking the first game of the Corvallis Super Regional.

  "These players have got to be microscopic and really tune into one task at hand at a time," Thompson said.

  After laying out the big picture, Thompson and the Tigers narrowed their focus to the second-seeded Cardinal, a team with a penchant for power hitting.

  "This is an offensive club," he said. "This is the No. 2 overall seed. All the higher seeds lost in the first round. Now we're all here to duke it out and the loser's bracket has some pretty good ballclubs."

  Auburn and Stanford are two of them. After they meet Monday at 1 p.m. CT, one will move on, the other will head home.

  Since 1981, four teams have lost their CWS opener before rallying to win the national championship. South Carolina did in 2010. Oregon State pulled off the feat twice, in 2006 and again in 2018.

  "We talked about what it's going to take to get back to play for a national championship," Thompson said. "It's going to take four games. We want to be the fifth team that's ever done that in history."

 

Jeff Shearer is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: @jeff_shearer

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