Ashley Andrews and Karen Weekly
May 3, 2009
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - The field of eight teams has been set for the upcoming Southeastern Conference Tournament scheduled to be contested over May 7-9 at the Lee Softball Stadium in Knoxville, Tenn. No. 15 Tennessee (37-15-1, 12-12-1 SEC) has secured the fifth seed for the event and will open its tourney run on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. ET against fourth-seeded and No. 20 LSU.
This marks Tennessee's seventh consecutive bid to the eight-team event and 10th all-time in program history. The Big Orange holds a 15-14 record all-time in the SEC's annual tournament and owns one title, having emerged victorious in 2006 in Athens, Ga. UT was defeated in the league semifinal round by Florida in both 2007 and 2008.
The single-elimination tournament will commence on Thursday at 11 a.m. ET when third-seeded Georgia battles sixth-seeded Kentucky. Second-seeded Alabama will face seventh-seeded Arkansas at 1:30 p.m. ET, and top-seeded Florida will play eighth-seeded Auburn at 5 p.m. ET.
The Big Orange traveled to Baton Rouge, La., over April 4-5 of this season for a three-game series against LSU and left with two wins and the first tie result in SEC softball history. After sweeping a hard-fought Saturday doubleheader from the Bayou Bengals, 2-1 and 7-4, the two squads battled to a 3-3 tie through seven innings in the finale. Tennessee actually managed to take a 4-3 lead venturing into the bottom of the eighth frame, but a 4 p.m. travel deadline established to allow UT enough time to catch the last flight out of Baton Rouge on Sunday (5:05 p.m. flight) didn't allow sufficient time for the Tigers to have their turn at the plate, forcing the game to revert back to the last completed inning.
|2009 SEC Tournament|
|Thursday, May 7|
|11 a.m.||#3 Georgia vs. #6 Kentucky|
|1:30 p.m.||#2 Alabama vs. #7 Arkansas|
|5 p.m.||#1 Florida vs. #8 Auburn|
|7:30 p.m.||#4 LSU vs. #5 Tennessee|
|Friday, May 8|
|5 p.m.||Game Five|
|7:30 p.m.||Game Six|
|Saturday, May 9|
|1:30 p.m.||Championship Game (FSN-TV)|
ALL TIMES EASTERN