TEAM OF THE DAY: Auburn
The Tigers weren't particularly impressive in non-conference play, but have stepped it up so far in Southeastern Conference action. AU improved to 3-1 in the SEC with an impressive 4-3 win over LSU in the series opener. AU starting pitcher Derek Varnadore was fantastic against the Tigers, striking out five and allowing just three runs (one earned) on six hits in 7 1/3 innings of work. Meanwhile, relievers Slade Smith and Justin Bryant both pitched at a high level to preserve the victory.
PLAYER OF THE DAY: Pierce Johnson, rhp, Missouri State
Johnson was a rising prospect well before today, but he took another step forward with a tremendous performance in a 3-0 win over Creighton. Johnson struck out 16 and allowed just five hits in a complete game shutout of the Bluejays. He threw 124 pitches, 92 of them for strikes.
UPSET OF THE DAY: New Mexico over TCU
The Lobos were expected to compete for the Mountain West regular season title entering the spring, but that seemed in doubt when they started 2012 in such horrible fashion. However, what a corner the Lobos have turned over the past couple of weeks. UNM improved to 4-0 in the MWC with a come-from-behind 9-8 win over TCU. First baseman DJ Peterson led the way at the plate with three hits and two RBIs, while Ben Woodchick, Ryan Padilla, Mitchell Garver and Alex Real each had two hits.
Kendall Rogers is the college baseball managing editor for Perfect Game and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org