April 29, 2006

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OXFORD, Miss. -- Tennessee and Ole Miss combined to score 34 runs on 40 hits Saturday afternoon, but a pair of seven-run innings by the Rebels proved costly as the Volunteers baseball team suffered a 21-13 loss at Swayze Field. Seven different Vols recorded multiple hits, but shortstop Tony Delmonico's four-hit, five-RBI, three-run performance stood out as UT fell to 25-18 (7-12 SEC) on the year.

Ole Miss (29-15, 12-8 SEC) clinched the series victory with their ninth straight win. The series concludes Sunday at 1:30 p.m. CT.

The Vols tied their season-highs for hits (19) and runs but allowed a season-high 21 hits and 21 runs.

Ole Miss exploded for seven runs on five hits in the bottom of the fifth, turning a four-run deficit into a three-run lead. Alex Presley and Justin Brashear each drove in a pair of runs as the Rebels sent 11 batters to the plate during the rally. Two of UM's fifth-inning runs went down as unearned, and Tennessee would come no closer than two runs the rest of the day.

After getting off to a slow start in Friday's series-opener, Tennessee swung the bats well early Saturday. The Vols put up two runs on four hits in the top of the first inning, using RBI basehits by catcher J.P. Arencibia and second baseman Michael Rivera to build an early two-run lead.

The Rebels answered with a pair of runs in the bottom of the first. Both tallies came on a two-RBI single up the middle by Presley.



Vols freshmen Cody Brown and Jarred Frazier led off the second inning with consecutive basehits, and fellow freshman Delmonico brought both runners home with a three-run homer to left field. Delmonico's second home run of the season gave UT a 5-2 advantage.

An RBI single by Rebels second baseman Justin Henry in the bottom of the second trimmed the Vols' lead to two runs, and UM shortstop Zack Cozart drove in another run in the third to make the score 5-4. After three full frames, the teams had combined for 15 hits.

Delmonico drove in his fourth run of the afternoon with an RBI single to left field in the fourth inning. Frazier scored from second base on the play, narrowly avoiding the tag attempt of catcher Brashear. Frazier had previously singled and advanced to second on Vols centerfielder Julio Borbon's second sacrifice bunt of the game.

Tennessee took an 8-4 lead after scoring two runs on three hits in the fifth inning. Rivera plated Arencibia with an RBI double, and right fielder Brian Van Kirk scored on an RBI groundout by right fielder Ryan Jones. But UT's lead quickly evaporated during the Rebels' seven-run bottom half of the frame.

Vols starting pitcher James Adkins was lifted after five innings. The sophomore took the loss to fall to 6-5 on the year after being touched for 11 runs (nine earned) on 12 hits with two walks and seven strikeouts.

Three more Ole Miss tallies in the sixth inning gave the Rebels a six-run lead.

But Borbon plated Brown with an RBI double down the right-field line in the seventh, jumpstarting what would become a five-run inning for the Vols. Later in the frame, Delmonico and Van Kirk drove in runs with a single and a fielder's choice, respectively. Borbon eventually crossed home plate on an error, and Delmonico scored on a wild pitch as UT pulled within one run of the Rebels, 14-13.

Ole Miss quickly managed to load the bases with no outs in the bottom of the seventh, and Presley drew an RBI walk from UT reliever Ty Pryor. Junior right-hander Deunte Heath then came on for the Vols, inheriting three men on base with no outs and Tennessee trailing by a pair.

Things then got out of hand as the Rebels proceeded to produce six more runs en route to building a 21-13 lead. Vols head coach Rod Delmonico was ejected during the Rebels' second seven-run inning of the game. Longtime Tennessee assistant coach - and Ole Miss alum - coach Larry Simcox then took charge of the Vols dugout on his 47th birthday.

Tennessee relievers Aaron Everett and Pryor and Heath combined to allow 10 runs on nine hits with three strikeouts and five walks.

Ole Miss starter Brett Bukvich earned a no-decision after giving up eight runs on 13 hits through 4 1/3 innings. Right-handed reliever Cody Satterwhite (7-2) picked up the win, and Garrett White logged his sixth save of the year.

Van Kirk and Rivera each finished with three hits for the Vols. Frazier went 2-for-3 with three runs scored.

Freshmen right-handers Josh Lindblom (4-4, 4.25 ERA) and Lance Lynn (4-2, 4.91 ERA) will start Sunday's series-finale for Tennessee and Ole Miss, respectively. Both hurlers were high school standouts in the state of Indiana last year.



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