March 23, 2007
KNOXVILLE -- Jeff Lockwood's pinch-hit, two-run homer in the seventh inning Friday pushed the Tennessee baseball team past Georgia by a score of 4-3 at Lindsey Nelson Stadium. An energized crowd of 3,168 saw UT junior James Adkins work eight solid innings before Lockwood took the mound to earn his third save of the year.
The Volunteers improved to 15-9 (2-2 SEC) with the victory, which was their eighth straight at home. Adkins pushed his record to 3-3 after scattering six hits and allowing three runs with five walks and 10 strikeouts. He has now earned wins in four of his last five home SEC starts, and he has recorded double-digit Ks in SEC play four times during his career.
After issuing a two-out walk to Vols third baseman Cody Brown in the seventh, Georgia starting pitcher Nathan Moreau was lifted in favor of right-hander Stephen Dodson. Tennessee head coach Rod Delmonico countered by pinch-hitting the left-handed Lockwood for Jarred Frazier. Lockwood's two-run blast to left field gave the Vols a 4-3 lead. It was his second homer of the season.
Georgia leadoff man Jonathan Wyatt gave the Bulldogs (9-12, 3-1 SEC) an early one-run lead when he sent the game's first pitch over the left-field wall for a solo home run. Adkins then settled in, however, striking out each of the next three Bulldogs in order.
Bulldogs shortstop Gordon Beckham gave Georgia a 2-0 lead in the top of the fifth when his RBI single plated Wyatt. An infield throwing error had previously moved Wyatt into scoring position after he reached on a bunt single.
Vols second baseman Danny Lima tripled to lead off the bottom of the fifth, and he scored three batters later when centerfielder Jarred Frazier laid down a bunt that Moreau struggled to field. A sliding Lima beat out a late tag attempt by Bulldogs catcher Joey Lewis to cut the Georgia lead in half.
Tennessee tied the game later in the fifth when Brown - who initially reached on a walk - scored from second base on an RBI basehit by shortstop Tony Delmonico.
The Bulldogs answered with one run on a pair of hits in the top of the sixth. Lewis scored on a Matt Robbins single to put Georgia back on top, 3-2. The Vols went down in order in the bottom of the sixth, and Wyatt led off the seventh with what appeared to be an extra-base hit to deep right-center. But Frazier sprinted back and made a fantastic catch on the run before crashing hard into the outfield wall. Adkins then retired UGA's Nos. 2 and 3 hitters to keep it a one-run game heading into the seventh-inning stretch. That set the stage for Lockwood's seventh-inning heroics.
Lockwood took the mound in the top of the ninth and struck out the first two Bulldogs he faced before getting Wyatt to groundout and end the game. Lockwood's perfect inning lowered his season ERA to a stellar 0.63.
Dodson took the loss to fall to 1-2 on the year. Moreau surrendered three runs on five hits with three walks and seven strikeouts through 6 2/3 innings.
Tennessee All-America catcher J.P. Arencibia was the only Vol to log multiple hits on the night, going 2-for-3. Adkins' 10 strikeouts gave him 305 for his career, making him just the second Vol ever to pass the 300-K mark (R.A. Dickey had 345 strikeouts from 1994-96).
The series resumes Saturday at 6 p.m. Senior right-hander Craig Cobb (4-2, 4.96 ERA) will start on the mound for Tennessee opposite Georgia right-hander Trevor Holder (0-1, 3.22 ERA). Cobb owns a 1-0 record and 1.59 career ERA vs. the Bulldogs.