AUBURN, Ala. — Jared Poché would like Round 2 against Vanderbilt.
That just might happen.
LSU beat Auburn 8-1 Saturday to clinch the No. 3 seed in the Southeastern Conference tournament, a spot that could lead to a matchup with the Commodores in the opener.
Poché, a freshman from Lutcher, is set to start in LSU’s first game in Hoover, Alabama, on Wednesday.
“I’m pretty sure he’d like another shot at them,” LSU coach Paul Mainieri said.
The Tigers received a bye through the single-elimination round.
LSU (40-11-1, 17-11-1) will meet the winner of No. 6 seed Vanderbilt and No. 11 seed Tennessee at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium. Vanderbilt and Tennessee play at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday.
Because of rest — ace Aaron Nola threw Friday against Auburn — Poché will begin the event for the Tigers.
Nola will pitch in LSU’s second game, regardless of the opponent, Mainieri said. Kyle Bouman will “probably” start a third game, and then the coach will likely use a hodgepodge of relievers the rest of the way.
In the first SEC start of his career, Poché allowed four runs and five hits, including three doubles, and walked five in the March 15 game against Vanderbilt in Nashville, Tenn.
Tennessee would have to pull the upset for the rematch not to happen. LSU beat Tennessee in two of three games at home and lost two of three games at Vanderbilt.
What lies beyond LSU’s first game? The Tigers would get the winner of Ole Miss and either No. 7 seed Arkansas or No. 10 seed Texas A&M.
LSU might need to go somewhat deep into the SEC tournament to be one of the 16 teams given a host bid for an NCAA regional.
“We begin a phase of the season that’s kind of in between postseason and regular season,” Mainieri said. “The SEC tournament still counts for your résumé as far as NCAA selection, host site, seeding. Yet you’re in the postseason trying to win a championship.”
The Tigers are 18-4 in the SEC Tournament under Mainieri, and they’ve won the event four times in five chances under the coach.
No more skid
Kade Scivicque didn’t change a thing.
During a month-long hitting slump, the junior said he was hitting balls well — just right at defenders.
So what’d he do?
“I just come to park every day and tried to work on it and hit the ball hard,” he said. “Just try to keep hitting the ball through the infield hard, low line drives.”
Scivicque broke out of the skid this week, finishing 4-for-6 with three RBIs in the three games against Auburn (28-28, 10-20). On Saturday, his three-hit day included a solo home run over the 30-foot left-field wall, an RBI double and a single.
He needed a triple to hit for the cycle. What were the chances this burly fellow would get that done?
“I thought about it once,” he said, “but I knew it was very rare for me to get a triple.”
A three-hit outing felt good enough anyway.
Scivicque was three for his last 37 in SEC games, an 11-game stretch in which he had one RBI. He slipped from his spot as LSU’s cleanup hitter and dropped out of the lineup at times.
“He’s been going through a little bit of a tough time,” Mainieri said. “I had never really given up on him. I just decided to give Danny Zardon a chance, and Tyler Moore has kind of emerged catching-wise. (Scivicque) is going to be a key guy for us.”