April 30, 2003
Sevierville, Tenn. - For the second straight year, the Tennessee Classic pitting the Tennessee Volunteers and the Class AA Tennessee Smokies at Smokies Park proved to be a good time for all. But once again, the professionals came up on the winning side of ledger with an 8-6 come-from-behind victory before a crowd of 3,712.
After giving up two unearned runs in the first, the Vols tied the game in the third on a bases loaded walk by Kyle Norrid and a fielders choice before taking a 5-2 lead in the fourth on a triple by Jordan Czarniecki and a two-run double by Javi Herrera.
Corey Erickson's solo home run to left center started a five-run two-out Smokies rally in the fifth as they took a 7-5 lead. Seven consecutive Smokie hitters reached safely in the inning, including five straight off reliever and eventual loser Trey Bridges who replaced Vol starter Casey Eisemann.
Kevan Burns connected with an RBI double before Chris Weekly tied the game by scoring on Bridges' wild pitch. Back-to-back RBI singles by John Gall and Bucky Jacobsen gave the Smokies the lead for good.
Eisemann pitched well through the first three innings, holding the Smokies to one hit while being touched for two unearned runs.
Jack Branston also showed some grit as he entered the game with the bases loaded in the fifth, replacing Bridges, and induced an infield pop up and a fly ball to center to thwart a Smokies scoring threat.
Cristobal Correa started for the Smokies and was lifted in the fourth after giving up five runs on six hits.
Jason Galbraith was the winning pitcher for the Smokies as he tossed 2 1/3 innings of shutout relief, striking out three while giving up just two singles.
Brian Flynn tossed two shutout innings and Juan Figueroa pitched the ninth for the save.
Caonabo Cosme added an insurance run in the seventh off John Parscal as his single through the left side scored John Nelson who sliced a two-out double down the left field line.
SUAREZ-DODSON WIN PRE-GAME HOME RUN CONTEST
The game was preceded by a two round home run contest that pitted four teams of one Vol and one Smokie player. Alex Suarez and Jeremy Dodson led off with a combined total of six and advanced to the finals against the tandem of Javi Herrera and Bucky Jacobsen who hit seven. Dodson paced his team with four, while Herrera connected on six.
In the finals Suarez carried his team by slugging five out of the park as he and Dodson hit six to Herrera and Jacobsen's one.
The Volunteers return home to start a seven-game home stand against the No. 22 Alabama Crimson Tide May 2-4. Game times are 7 p.m., 7 p.m. and 2 p.m. ET.