April 19, 2009
BATON ROUGE, La. - With strong starting pitching from Ty'Relle Harris and nine runs in the first four innings the Tennessee baseball team earned a road-series victory over top-ranked LSU on Sunday afternoon at Alex Box Stadium. The road series win is the first for the Volunteers since it took two of three at Florida in 2007.
Tennessee (19-22, 5-13 Southeastern Conference) wins its second straight SEC series as it matched a season high with nine runs and 12 hits in an SEC game. The road-series win is coach Todd Raleigh's first during his time at Tennessee.
The back-to-back victories over the No. 1 ranked team are the first for Tennessee since it swept both games of a doubleheader against LSU in 1991.
LSU (28-12, 11-7) drops its first SEC series after winning nine straight dating back to April 2008.
Harris (4-2) worked a season high 6-2/3 innings allowing four runs on eight hits. The senior did not issue a walk and struck out seven. Through his first four innings of work, Harris surrendered only two hits.
In his ninth start of the season, LSU sophomore Austin Ross (4-5) pitched two innings and surrendered six runs on six hits.
Tennessee took a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Center fielder Kentrail Davis drove in shortstop Zach Osborne with an RBI double to left-center field. Osborne led off the game with a single through the left side. Davis then scored from third on a wild pitch for the second run of the inning.
In the bottom of the first, LSU designated hitter Blake Dean made a bid for a run-scoring double but Davis made a spectacular diving catch in center field to keep the run from scoring.
The Vols added to their lead with a run in second on second baseman Cody Grisham's sacrifice fly to left field. Cody Brown scored on the play after leading off the inning with a double down the left-field line.
Tennessee's three-run third inning made the score 6-0. Hawn's RBI double to center field sent home Polk for the first run of the inning. Davis then scored his second run of the game via a wild pitch. Brown capped the scoring with a sacrifice fly to left field, scoring Hawn.
Home runs by Polk and Hawn put the Vols in front 9-0 in the top of the fourth. Polk hit a two-run homer, his third of the season, and Hawn followed with his 15th of the season, a solo shot to center field. Fifteen home runs ties Hawn for seventh on UT's top 10 list for home runs in a season.
LSU scored its first run of the game in the bottom of the fifth inning on an RBI single off the bat of third baseman Tyler Hanover.
LSU cut the Vols' lead to 9-2 in the bottom of the sixth on Dean's solo home run to right field. Right fielder Mikie Mahtook hit a two-run homer to center field in the seventh to make the score 9-4.
Tennessee returns to Knoxville for a four-game homestand beginning with a matchup against instate-rival East Tennessee State on Tuesday at Robert M. Lindsay Field at Lindsey Nelson Stadium. First pitch for the game is schedule for 7 p.m.