May 15, 2005
BATON ROUGE, La. -- The No. 9 Tennessee baseball team suffered a 14-4 loss to No. 11 LSU Sunday at Alex Box Stadium. After winning Friday's series opener, the Volunteers dropped the final two games of the series and now stand at 36-16 (16-10 SEC) on the year.
Tennessee right fielder Eli Iorg went 2-for-4 on the day and finished the series with a team-high eight hits. Senior Eric King rapped out three hits in the game, while Chase Headley and Kelly Edmundson each pitched in with two.
Preseason All-America outfielder Ryan Patterson gave LSU (35-17, 16-11 SEC) an early 2-0 lead when he hit a two-run homer to left field in the bottom of the first inning.
The Tigers then loaded the bases with no outs in the bottom of the second inning and forced the Vols to turn to their bullpen after consecutive RBI hits by Chris Jackson and Jordan Mayer brought in three runs to make the score 5-0 LSU.
Sophomore right-hander Sean Watson came on in relief of freshman starter James Adkins. Watson inherited two runners (both in scoring position) and then walked Patterson to load the bases once again with no outs. Jackson scored from third on a wild pitch, and LSU plated four more runs on RBIs by Nick Stavinoha, Will Harris and Matt Liuzza.
The Tigers totaled eight runs on five hits in the bottom of the second, marking the most runs Tennessee has allowed in a single inning all season. LSU's five hits tied UT's season-high for hits allowed in a single inning.
LSU's power surge continued in the bottom of the third inning. With Jackson on second base, Stavinoha sent a two-run home run over the wall in left-center. Stavinoha's second homer of the series gave the Tigers a commanding 12-run lead.
In the bottom of the fifth inning, Jackson scored from second base on a fielding error, and the Tigers tacked on run No. 14 when Liuzza crossed home plate on a pinch-hit RBI by Bryan Harris in the bottom of the sixth.
Tennessee logged one hit in each of the first four innings and finished with 10 hits to LSU's 11. The Vols' only runs of the day came off LSU reliever Justin Meier in the top of the eighth inning. Iorg scored on an RBI double by King, and Headley was driven in on an RBI sacrifice fly by junior Michael Rivera.
Later in the eighth, senior New Orleans, La., native Rob Fitzgerald drew a walk and then scored - along with King - on a two-RBI double to the corner in left field by Edmundson. Edmundson's team-best 17th double of the season made the score 14-4 in favor of LSU.
Adkins (7-3) took the loss after giving up seven runs on five hits with two walks and a strikeout in just one inning. It was his shortest outing of the year and the first time he didn't work at least four full innings.
Watson gave way to redshirt freshman Chase Hardin in the bottom of the sixth after being touched for six runs (three earned) on four hits with three walks and six strikeouts in four innings of work. Hardin allowed one unearned run on one hit through two innings. Junior right-hander Jabe Beard worked the bottom of the eighth and gave up one hit.
LSU starting pitcher Greg Smith threw six shutout innings and scattered six hits while walking one and striking out four. He was credited with the win and improved to 9-2 on the year. Right-hander Brandon Nall threw one inning for the Tigers, and Meier and right-hander Chris Cahill combined to pitch the final two.
Tennessee returns to home to Lindsey Nelson Stadium to host Lipscomb Tuesday at 7 p.m., before facing Georgia in a three-game weekend series.