Feb. 9, 2013
ST. GEORGE, Utah - Madison Shipman had three hits and scored three times, Hannah Akamine blasted her first homer of the season and Ellen Renfroe fanned nine batters over seven frames to lead the No. 6/5 Tennessee softball team to a 6-3 win over BYU on cold Saturday afternoon in the Red Desert Classic.
The Lady Vols (5-0) tallied 10 hits against a good BYU (1-3) team that started 2012 20-game winner Tori Almond in the circle. UT improved to 4-0 all-time against the Cougars, who were an NCAA Tournament team last year.
Shipman led the way offensively, going 3-for-4 with a double, three runs scored and a stolen base. Akamine was 2-for-2 with a solo home run. Lauren Gibson reached base three times with a big triple to the gap in right field and a pair of walks.
Tennessee jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first inning. After Raven Chavanne legged out an infield single to second base, Kat Dotson knocked an RBI single and advanced to second base on the play. After a Madison Shipman single to short and a four-pitch walk for Lauren Gibson, the bases were loaded. Two batters later, Melissa Davin reached on an RBI fielder's choice. In the next at-bat, Shipman scored from third when Davin got caught in a rundown between first and second.
Akamine opened the top of the second inning with a homer to left center, a rocket shot off an 0-2 pitch. UT's lead grew to 4-0.
In the third inning, Shipman hit a one-out double to right center. Gibson followed with a hard-hit RBI triple to right center, motoring around the base paths.
The Lady Vols extended their advantage to 6-0 in the fifth inning when Cheyanne Tarango hit an RBI single to left field to plate Shipman from third base.
BYU kept fighting late, scoring three runs in the seventh. After back-to-back singles and a five-pitch walk, Madisen Robb scored on a bases-loaded wild pitch by Ivy Renfroe, who entered in relief after the walk. Ellen Renfroe re-entered and JC Clayton plated Alexandra Hudson Shamo on an RBI groundout to second. The Cougars drew to within 6-3 when Lacey Millett hit an RBI single to short. Ellen Renfroe closed out the game with a strikeout to give UT the win.
The Lady Vols will conclude their stay in St. George, Utah, on Sunday with a 1 p.m. ET (11 a.m. MT) game against Oklahoma State at the Canyons Complex. UT is the designated home team for that game.