Davis Walks Off the Skyhawks

Davis Diaz homers in ninth as Vandy wins 5-4

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Davis Diaz hit a solo home run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth to lead Vanderbilt to a 5-4, walk-off win over UT Martin on Tuesday night at Hawkins Field.

After Vanderbilt led 4-1 through four innings, UT Martin pulled even in the eighth inning to send the game to the ninth, tied at 4-4. The walk-off homer by Diaz was the first by a Commodore since Troy LaNeve vs. Kentucky on May 20, 2021.

The Skyhawks scored first, plating a run in the top of the first using three hits. Sam Hliboki took over on the mound to start the second inning and was nearly perfect over the next four frames. Hliboki didn’t allow a hit and struck out eight consecutive batters.

Vanderbilt got on the board in the bottom of the second as Alan Espinal worked a leadoff walk and later scored on a wild pitch.

Jonathan Vastine went opposite field for his sixth home run on the season with one out in the bottom of the third, giving the Commodores a 2-1 lead.

Espinal walked again to lead off the bottom of the fourth. Troy LaNeve worked another walk to put runners on first and second with one out. Matthew Polk then doubled to center field, scoring Espinal. Logan Poteet brought home LaNeve on a sac fly to make it 4-1, Vandy.

UT Martin cut Vandy’s lead down to one run in the top of the seventh with runs on a double and a sac fly, but the Commodores stayed in front with a groundout to end the inning, stranding the tying run on second.

The Skyhawks led off the top of the eighth with a double by Blaze Bell. Bell moved up to third on a groundout and came home to tie the game at 4-4 on a sac fly.

With two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Diaz came to the plate and sent a 1-0 pitch over the wall in left-center to win it for the Dores. Three of Diaz’ five home runs this season have come in the last six games.

The Commodores improve to 30-11 on the season. Vanderbilt has won 30 or more games in 20 consecutive seasons under head coach Tim Corbin, excluding the shortened 2020 campaign.

Vanderbilt continues the homestand with a three-game series this weekend at Hawkins Field against Mississippi State.