Tennessee softball upset by College of Charleston, 3-1

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MT. PLEASANT, S.C. (UT Release) -- Down two runs in the top of the seventh, the No. 7/9 Lady Vols were unable to plate a pair of runners on base with two outs as College of Charleston upset UT, 3-1, Thursday afternoon at Patriots Point.

Tennessee (14-3) had a 1-0 lead after the first inning, but College of Charleston (7-3) knotted the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the fifth and scored twice in the sixth to earn the win.

Ivy Renfroe (5-1) took the loss after striking out two and allowing three runs (two earned over 3.1 relief frames. Ellen Renfroe started the game and recorded three strikeouts over the first 2.2 scoreless innings.

CofC's Hope Klicker (4-2) earned the win for the Cougars after striking out six and allowing one run off four hits over seven frames.

The Lady Vols managed just four hits in the game. The biggest was Lauren Gibson's two-out RBI single up the middle in the top of the first that plated Kat Dotson from second base.

Tennessee left the bases loaded in the second inning, missing out on a chance to take firm control of the game early. With one out Melissa Brown hit a single to right and Hannah Akamine ripped a single through the left side to give UT two runners aboard. Two batters later, Raven Chavanne drew a two-out walk on five pitches, but Klicker escaped the inning with a strikeout.

Ivy Renfroe entered the game in the bottom of the third with runners on first and second and two outs and induced a ground out to short.

In the top of the fourth, Melissa Davin knocked a leadoff single to right field and stole second base. She was left stranded after Klicker induced a lineout to third and a flyout to left.

The Cougars evened the game in the bottom of the fifth when Lizzy Vaughn connected for a one-out RBI double to the warning track in right field to score Kristy Giragosian.

In the bottom of the sixth, College of Charleston pulled a head when Chandler Frisbie hit an RBI double to right center with one out. In the next at-bat, pinch runner Chloe Fletcher stole third base and scored on a throwing error by Akamine trying to get her out at third.

In the top of the seventh, Akamine reached on a throwing error by the third baseman Kelsey Hodgson that soared high over first base. Rainey Gaffin reached on a fielder's choice with the runner out at second and two batters later Dotson reached on a fielding error by the shortstop Vaughn to give UT two runners on with two outs. Klicker closed the door on the game, inducing a fielder's choice with Gaffin out at third base.

Tennessee will next play in the Buccaneer Invitational in Northern Charleston, playing UNC-Wilmington and Charleston Southern on Friday at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m., respectively. The Lady Vols will play UNC-Wilmington and Valparaiso on Saturday starting at 9 a.m. before concluding their non-conference tournament schedule against Charleston Southern at 3 p.m. on Sunday.

UT will be back at Lee Stadium on March 8 to open its weekend series and SEC play against Alabama.

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