The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference
The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference

Vols' pitching effort leads UT past Belmont

2699 days ago
Tennessee Athletics

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee used aggressive offense and a combined effort from eight different Vol pitchers to secure a 7-2 win over the Belmont Bruins on Wednesday night at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.

With the win, Tennessee moves to 19-24 on the year and is 7-17 in SEC play, while Belmont slips to a 25-22 overall season record.

The Volunteers recorded 11 hits against Belmont, led by shortstop A.J. Simcox (2-for-4, RBI), right fielder Jordan Rodgers (2-for-5, RBI), third baseman Jared Pruett (2-for-4) and center fielder Chris Hall (1-for-1, RBI). Tennessee also had four batters hit by five pitches in the contest, including left fielder Christin Stewart (2-for-4), who ranked tied for second-most times hit by a pitch in the SEC entering Wednesday's game.

With a 1-for-4 night at the plate, first baseman Andrew Lee also extended his current hit streak to 14 games, a season-high streak for the Tennessee native and the Vols' squad.

Starting pitcher Kyle Serrano went 2.0 scoreless innings, allowing just one hit with one strikeout. The Vols then went to Aaron Soto (1.0 IP), Steven Kane (1.0 IP) and Zach Warren (1.0 IP) before the sixth inning.

In the sixth, redshirt freshman and Knoxville native Eric Freeman made his debut for the Vols and threw 1.0 inning, recording his first career strikeout against Belmont's left fielder William Dodd.

Freshman lefty Zach Reid tossed 1.0 scoreless inning in the seventh, making his first appearance since February 25 against the Bruins. Senior Peter Lenstrohm threw a hitless eighth frame before righthander Quint Robinson shut down the Bruins and closed out the game for UT in the ninth.

Tennessee took an aggressive approach from the start, as A.J. Simcox and Jordan Rodgers reached via base hits and came around to score via stolen bases and multiple errors by the Bruins defense.

With a 2-0 lead, the Vols pushed two more runs across in the fourth to make it a 4-0 ballgame. Simcox led off the frame with his second base hit of the game, stealing second and scoring on a throw attempt to second base. After being hit by a pitch, Chris Hall later scored on an error by Belmont's first baseman Drake Byrd.

Belmont chipped away at Tennessee's lead, scoring one run in the fifth and another in the sixth. But the Vols came back to plate two additional runs in the bottom of the fifth and one in the eighth to further their lead and secure a 7-2 win.

This weekend, Tennessee travels to take on the Arkansas Razorbacks (29-18, 14-10 SEC) for a three-game series in Fayetteville, Arkansas.