After dropping the two games of a Friday doubleheader, Tennessee baseball won the series finale to move to 4-4 overall on the season.
Tennessee 2, UC Irvine 5
The Vols struck first in the opening game of the doubleheader, but it was the Anteaters who had the last say on the score line. Tennessee opened the scoring in the 2nd inning when Nick Senzel led off with double, moved to third on a balk and scored on a wild pitch. Vols starter Bret Marks gave up only one run through five innings before a fielding error cost the Vols three crucial runs and put UC Irvine up 4-2 in the 6th inning. The Anteaters tacked on another run in the 7th and held on to the lead for the remainder of the game.
Tennessee 1, UC Irvine 2
Tennessee starter Kyle Serrano pitched 6.2 innings of solid ball, but the offense failed to string hits together, and UC Irvine swept the doubleheader on a walk-off single. Serrano did not give up a hit until the 4th inning. “I was very proud of him tonight in this kind of setting, back where he grew up with a lot of people he knows, he handled it extremely well,” said head coach Dave Serrano. Christin Stewart (1-4, 1 RBI) hit his first home run of the year to give the Vols a one-run lead after the first frame. UC Irvine tied it up in the 4th inning and loaded the bases with 1 out in the 9th on an E1 fielder’s choice. Cox struck out the Anteater’s next batter, but a single up the middle brought the winning run home.
Tennessee 12, UC Irvine 10
Tennessee tallied more hits in the finale than the team did in both Saturday games combined, and the Vols out-slugged UC Irvine to leave California with one win in the series. The Vols, led by Nick Senzel (3-4, 1 RBI) and Andrew Plunkett (2-3, 4 RBI), put runs on the board in six of the nine innings. Plunkett’s two-run homer in the 6th inning pushed Tennessee’s advantage to 10-7, but UC Irvine added to the slugfest by plating three runs in the bottom of the frame to tie it at 10. Brodie Leftridge led off the 7th with a double and scored the go-ahead run on a groundout. He scored again in the 9th after leading off with a triple and scoring on a sacrifice fly, ending the scoring and giving Tennessee a 12-10 lead, one that would remain through the final frame.
Edited by Maggie Jones