The fifth ranked Tennessee baseball team (29-8, 10-5) looked to get back in the win column after dropping two of three to Vanderbilt over the weekend. The Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles (12-16) — the darlings of the 2018 NCAA Tournament — made their way to Knoxville Tuesday night.
The Volunteers opted to start Jason Rackers, who would turn in 3.1 innings, giving up one hit, one run (unearned), allowing one walk, and racking up four strikeouts. A revolving door of relievers would culminate in Sean Hunley’s entrance for two innings to conclude the game. Hunley’s (6-2) pair of innings yielded one hit, no runs, no walks, and four strikeouts, in addition to the win.
The Golden Eagles kicked off the scoring in the first inning. Golston Gillespie grounded out, but a run was able to score on the play. It was the last lead Tech would hold.
In the bottom of the first inning, Drew Gilbert singled in Logan Steenstra, knotting the game at 1-1.
It wouldn’t be until the bottom of the sixth that another run would cross the plate. Jordan Beck hit a solo home run (7) to produce a 2-1 lead for the Volunteers.
Cody Littlejohn singled in a run in the eighth inning for Tech, drawing the game back to even, 2-2.
But in the bottom of the ninth, with Max Ferguson at the plate, a single into right field would drive in Beck, thus scoring the winning run of the game, 3-2.
With the win, Tennessee wins its 30th ballgame of the year, resulting in a 30-8 overall record to go along with its 10-5 conference record, while Tennessee Tech falls to 12-17.
Tennessee’s schedule continues this weekend with a visit to College Station, Texas. A three game series against the Texas A&M Aggies (22-17, 4-11) begins Friday night at 7:30 pm and continues Saturday evening (6:00 pm), and Sunday afternoon (1:00 pm).