March 5, 2004
Knoxville, Tenn. - Derek Tharpe hurled 8 2/3 innings, while Brett Chappell scored and drove in a run as the Tennessee Volunteers won their fifth straight game with a 3-1 victory over the Georgia State Panthers in the first of three games at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.
The Vols (9-2), who won their 14th straight home game, look to tie the school record for consecutive home wins against the Panthers (4-6) Saturday at 3 p.m.
Tharpe (3-0), who struck out eight and walked one, allowed one unearned run while scattering seven hits in the win. He kept the Panthers at bay before a catchers interference call with two in the ninth helped lead to Georgia State's lone run.
Tharpe faced the minimum through five, giving up just two hits, and was impressive into the late innings by striking out the side in the seventh.
Scot Drucker picked up his second save as he came on in relief of Tharpe, but not before giving up a pinch-hit single to Tim Johnson that plated Justin Newman. Drucker then struck out Charlie Pelt to end the game.
Tennessee struck for two in the third as Chappell scored on a ground out before Kyle Norrid singled home Eli Iorg who drew a two-out walk and stole second. Chappell, Norrid and Iorg each had two hits to pace the Vols.
Chappell's double in the fourth drove home Rob Fitzgerald who also drew a two-out walk and stole second.
Brett Strickland (1-2) posted a solid outing in the loss, giving up all three UT runs on five hits in six innings. Mike Feliciano kept the Panthers in the game with two shutout innings of relief.