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Baseball Vols continue to shine in national polls

Tennessee went 3-1 last week including a series win over SEC rival Florida
Tennessee baseball
Tennessee baseball(Tennessee Athletic Communications)
Published: Apr. 12, 2021 at 9:25 AM EDT
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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - Tony Vitello’s baseball Vols, now 27-6 on the season, are ranked 5th in the latest D1 and Baseball America college baseball polls. The Vols are coming off another impressive week of play which saw the team go 3-1 including two victories and a series win over SEC rival Florida.

Tennessee put together its most impressive weekend of the season in winning a series with Florida. The game 1 win came when the duo of Chad Dallas (7 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 11 K) and Sean Hunley (2 IP, 0 H, 0 R) out-pitched the Florida duo of Tommy Mace and Christian Scott, who both got tagged with runs.

Tennessee put four on Mace’s ledger in six innings and then scored a run in each of Scott’s two innings. Left fielder Evan Russell led the way by going 3-for-4 with three RBI. All of Tennessee’s scoring in the game 2 win came in one big five-run sixth inning, a frame in which Florida used three different pitchers to get out of it.

Four different players - Jake Rucker, Jordan Beck, Luc Lipcius and Connor Pavolony - had RBI hits in the inning. After UF scored three runs off of Will Heflin in 3.2 innings, righthander Mark McLaughlin (2.1, 0 H, 0 R) and lefthander Kirby Connell (3 IP, 4 H, 1 R) turned in good work to hold off the Gators.

The series win is the fourth straight to start the SEC season for the Vols. That hasn’t happened since 1970. Tennessee will host Western Carolina at Lindsey Nelson Stadium on Tuesday at 5pm. Then it’s another Top-10 showdown as the Volunters welcome perennial power and in-state rival Vanderbilt to town next weekend.

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