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Auburn baseball looking to reset entering Atlanta Regional

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AUBURN, Ala. – Following a disastrous end to their SEC Tournament, Auburn is looking to reset heading into the NCAA Tournament this Friday in the Atlanta Regional.

In addition to practice, Auburn head coach Butch Thompson had his team focus on team-building exercises this week, including a trip to his lake house for a fish fry.

“I think we have had a great week because we’ve gotten closer,” Thompson said.

Catcher Matt Scheffler echoed a similar sentiment when asked about the importance of the team-building exercises heading into the postseason.

“It’s huge to be able to experience it with your family,” Scheffler said. “Knowing that you are only one of 64 teams left in the country playing and just being able to rest with your brothers and just know that you’ve got another week of baseball ahead of you.”

Despite the loss to LSU in the SEC Tournament, Thompson believes that the recent break has benefited his team more than anyone else.

“You never give up,” Thompson said. “You always think the best is right around the corner. That’s what we have continued to do as a coaching staff. To believe that everybody is capable of a little bit more and can we continue to our last opportunity, our last breath, can we continue to try to get this team as close as it can possibly be.”

Thompson specifically mentioned shortstop Will Holland and right-handed pitcher Cody Greenhill as a reason for Auburn’s postseason position.

“In the last 10 games outside of one game or something like that, Will Holland has really come on for us a little bit,” Thompson said. “We would not be having a press conference today in regards to a regional if not for Cody Greenhill and what he’s continued to do and the toughness he’s stood in the gap. He’s kind of given this team his arm to get to this point.”

Thompson is looking for underperforming players to step up in addition to some of the key players that have helped Auburn to this point.

“I think they are disappointed.” Thompson said. “I think they have kept working. I hope this is a rebound, and they see this as an opportunity in a fresh sense for them. I like where Will has been coming to. I like what Cody has done for us this entire year, and I think a couple of these other guys, because of that work, that’s what a team should be all about. Hey, you’ve got my back, and, now it’s my time.”

Thompson said he knows they are capable, and he hopes they are excited for the opportunity to reset in the NCAA Tournament.

Auburn (33-25), the No. 2 seed in the regional, will play No. 3 seed Coastal Carolina (35-24-1) Friday at 11 a.m. CT on ESPNU. Thompson offered praise to the Chanticleers, citing the program’s national championship won in 2016.

“As I look around and look at the brackets, I can’t really find a No. 3 seed that is any stronger,” Thompson said.


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