Gaffin Grand Slam helps Lady Vols blank EKU

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - Rainey Gaffin smacked a grand slam and drove in five runs to back Ivy Renfoe's six-strikeout gem and lead No. 6/5 Tennessee to an 8-0, five-inning win over Eastern Kentucky on Wednesday at Lee Stadium.

Tennessee (28-6) plated four runs in the second and four in the third to power past Eastern Kentucky (18-12) and pick up its 22nd non-conference win on the year.

Gaffin finished 2-for-3 with the grand slam, an RBI single and five RBIs. Kat Dotson had a two-RBI single and Lexi Overstreet had an RBI double off the wall in right field.

Ivy Renfroe (13-3) enjoyed a dominant day in the circle, fanning six batters and allowing one hit over five shutout frames. The win marked her four complete-game shutout of the season.

Shaylon Robb (6-6) started the game for EKU and allowed five earned runs over 2.1 frames take the loss. Leanna Pittsenbarger allowed three earned runs over 1.2 relief frames.

With two on and two outs the bottom of the second, Overstreet drilled the first pitch she saw from Robb off the wall in right field to plate Madison Shipman from second base and give UT a 1-0 lead. In the next at-bat, Gaffin knocked a well-placed RBI single to the shortstop to score Hannah Akamine push UT's lead to 2-0. Two batters later, Dotson rippled a bases-loaded single through the right side to drive in Overstreet and Gaffin.

In the Tennessee third, Pittsenbarger entered the circle with one and one out. Akamine hit a one-out single down the left field line to load the bases. Two batters later, Gaffin took a ball and a strike before sending the next pitch off the scoreboard in left for the first grand slam of her UT career. Tennessee went up 8-0 and never looked back.

The Lady Vols will next head to Lexington, Ky., to face No. 20/20 Kentucky on Friday at 5 p.m. in a non-conference game. UT returns home on April 1 to host Western Carolina at 6 p.m. before hosting Tennessee State on April 2 at 7 p.m.

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