Knoxville, Tenn. – The No. 2 Tennessee Volunteers eased past the Liberty Flames, 9-3, in Game 4 of the NCAA Knoxville, Tenn. Regional, Saturday evening at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.
With the setback, Liberty drops into an elimination game against the Duke Blue Devils, tomorrow at 2 p.m. Regional host Tennessee will meet the winner of Liberty and Duke later in the day with a chance to move on to a Super Regional.
Tennessee never trailed in the game, hitting five home runs to jump out to a 7-0 advantage over the first three innings. All-SEC first team shortstop Liam Spence had three hits, two home runs and four RBI, while first baseman Luc Lipcius also hit two solo home runs and scored three times for the Volunteers.
Held scoreless through the first five innings, Liberty broke through in the sixth inning for three runs with two out. Flames first baseman Logan Mathieu, who had two hits in the contest, plated a run in the inning with an RBI single. Left fielder Aaron Anderson also had two hits for the Flames, both doubles.
Liberty falls to 40-15 on the year. Tennessee ups its record to 47-16.
Box Score Highlights
Records: Liberty (40-14); Tennessee (46-16)
Location: Knoxville, Tenn. (Lindsey Nelson Stadium)
WP: Blake Tidwell (9-3)| LP: Dylan Cumming (4-3)
TENN – 1st INNING – Spence homers, 1-0
TENN – 2nd INNING – Lipcius homers, 2-0
TENN – 2nd INNING – Spence homers, Pavolony and Derkay score, 5-0
TENN – 3rd INNING – Gilbert homers, 6-0
TENN – 3rd INNING – Lipcius homers, 7-0
LIBERTY – 6th INNING – Wilson reaches on throwing error, McDyre scores, 7-1
LIBERTY – 6th INNING – Mathieu singles advances to second on error, Wilson and Gulakowski score, 7-3
TENN – 8th INNING – Derkay singles, Lipcius and Gilbert score, 9-3
· Tennessee edged Liberty in the hit column, 9-8. The Volunteers committed two errors in the game.
· The Flames left nine men on base, while the Volunteers left five.
· Liberty used seven pitchers in the contest. Starting pitcher Dylan Cummings takes the loss, giving up seven runs on six hits over 2 2/3 innings. He struck out one and walked one.
· Tennessee right-hander Blake Tidwell held the Flames scoreless through the first five innings. The freshman allowed three runs, all unearned, on four hits over 5 2/3 innings to record the win. The freshman struck out three and walked three batters.
· Volunteers designated hitter Peter Derkay had three hits and two RBI.
Trailing 7-3 in the seventh, the Flames looked to rally. Gray Betts doubled and left fielder Aaron Anderson walked to open the inning. After going to the bullpen, Volunteers left-hander Kirby Connell struck out the next Liberty batter and then ended the inning by inducing a double play to hold Tennessee’s lead.
Beyond the Box Score
- Liberty and Tennessee were meeting for the third time in an NCAA Regional, this evening. The two teams split a pair of games during the 2019 Chapel Hill, N.C., Regional. Liberty won the first game 6-1, while Tennessee defeated the Liberty in their second meeting in the regional 6-5.
· This evening was the first time that the Flames have given up more than four home runs in a contest in 2021.
· Anderson now has 25 doubles on the year to lead the ASUN Conference and records his team-leading 25th multi-hit game with two hits in the contest.
· With two hits in the contest, Mathieu posts his ninth multi-hit game of the season.
· Betts doubled in the seventh inning to extend his reached base safely streak to a team-leading 44 consecutive games. The ASUN All-Conference catcher has at least one hit in seven straight contests.