March 26, 2003
Knoxville, Tenn. - Michael Rivera's RBI single with one out in the ninth lifted Tennessee to a 6-5 victory over the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles as the Volunteers won their fourth straight game.
Tennessee (15-8) loaded the bases as Chad LeGate drew a walk and moved to second on Justin Branson's single to left-center off the outstretched glove of Carlos Martin, and took third when Jordan Czarniecki got hit for the second time in the game.
Rivera's game-winning hit was only the fourth given up by Golden Eagle (11-11) starter Doug Vincent (3-2) who went the distance in the loss. He finished with eight strikeouts and seven walks.
Britt Clubb had three hits to pace the 13-hit Tennessee Tech attack while Martin, Ben Shannon and Scott Terry added a pair of hits apiece.
Joey Andrews (2-1) earned the win as he pitched the ninth, working out of a jam as Tech left 13 runners on base, including two at second and third to end the inning.
Tennessee was able to plate single runs in each of the first three innings in taking a 3-2 lead. Czarniecki scored on a groundout after getting hit by a pitch, moving to second on wild pitch and third on a balk in the first. Walter Sevilla added an RBI double in the second and Czarniecki plated the third run as part of double steal in the third. He finished with four steals on the night.
Tech scored two unearned runs in the third on a groundout and RBI single by Ryan Hay. The Eagles took a 5-3 lead in the fifth on a RBI single by Martin and two-run double by Terry.
Javi Herrera's two-run home run off the scoreboard in right, his fifth of the year, tied the game 5-5 in the bottom of the fifth.
Rob Fitzgerald went four innings in his first start of the season for Tennessee, surrendering two unearned runs on six hits. Patrick Green was roughed up for three runs on three hits in 2/3 innings, while Steve Wesley kept Tech in check for 3 1/3 innings, giving up just two hits.
Tennessee travels to Gainesville, Fla., to face the 15th-ranked Florida Gators, Mar. 28-30. Game times are 6:30 p.m., 3 p.m. and Noon ET. Saturday's game will be televised on FOX Sports Net, while Sunday's contest will be shown on the Sunshine Network in the state of Florida only.