March 2, 2009
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - With the oft-delayed Tennessee Classic now in the rear-view mirror and a 15-game win streak in tow, the No. 8 Lady Vols (17-1) turn their attention to a single Tuesday tilt against Boston College at 5 p.m. ET before venturing to Oklahoma for this weekend's high-profile challenge, "The Preview" presented by Worth. During its mid-western travels, UT will play two games against both No. 5 Oklahoma and No. 17 Northwestern. Three of those four match-ups will be contested at the famed ASA Hall of Fame Stadium, site of the annual Women's College World Series.
The Big Orange managed to get in two games at its Tennessee Classic at Lee Softball Stadium before heavy rains, cold weather, wind and even the threat of snowfall cancelled all of Saturday and Sunday's schedule. UT destroyed Bowling Green, 18-0 (5 inn.), before fighting off a tough James Madison squad by a 3-1 count. In the opener against the Falcons, UT sent 16 batters to the plate during the first inning while putting a single frame, season-high 11 runs up on the scoreboard. The Orange & White batted around the order in three of its four offensive opportunities versus BGSU.
Sophomore center fielder Kelly Grieve continued her torrid offensive output by going 7-of-8 (.875) at the plate over the two games with a triple, three runs scored, two stolen bases and five RBIs, raising her overall average to a squad-best .470. The slap-hitting speedster even equaled a Tennessee single-game record with five hits to go along with a career-high five RBIs in the rout of Bowling Green. Against the Falcons, Grieve singled and tripled in the first inning, tallying three RBIs. The Asheville, N.C., native currently heads the Southeastern Conference in overall hits (31) while rating second in stolen bases (15) and third in runs scored (23). With four more runs batted in during the two match-ups, junior catcher/first baseman Tiffany Huff improved her season RBI total to 36, tying Georgia's Alisa Goler for the league lead in that category. In the circle senior Danielle Pieroni bested the Falcons to pick up her second collegiate pitching win, while Cat Hosfield downed JMU to garner her SEC-best 12th victory of 2009.
Under the direction of 14th year head coach Jennifer Finley (367-310-1), Boston College ventures to Knoxville with a 4-7 overall record in tow. Trips to Shreveport, La., and Orlando, Fla., for tourneys provided wins over Nicholls State, Bryant Univ., Oklahoma State and Illinois-Chicago, while last weekend's visit to the Frost Classic in Chattanooga, Tenn., resulted in four cancellations in five attempts. The only contest the Eagles were able to play at that event was a 7-4 (8 inn.) loss to East Tennessee State. Much like their UT counterparts, Boston College has played four extra-inning games in 2009. Unlike Tennessee, who maintains a perfect 4-0 record in such games, the Eagles are now 0-4 in extras.
Freshman Brittany Wilkins guides BC's offense with a .400 average (14-of-35), three doubles, the Eagles' only home run and nine RBIs. Junior Amy Tunstall has contributed a .387 mark with four two-baggers and five RBIs, while sophomore Irene Delagrammaticas (.359) rounds out a trio hitting over .300. Junior Taylor Peyton has been the first choice from the circle, working 44.1 innings while posting a 3-4 record, a 1.42 ERA and 24 K's.