Dores Fall in Extras

Vanderbilt drops Game 1 at Tennessee

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Vanderbilt was defeated 4-3 in 12 innings at Lindsey Nelson Stadium on Friday night as Tennessee took Game 1 in the series.

The Volunteers hit a pair of solo home runs in the ninth to tie the game at 3-3 and force extra innings and walked off the Commodores with a solo home run in the bottom of the 12th.

The duo of Matthew Polk and Jonathan Vastine combined to go 6-for-8 at the plate and scored all of Vanderbilt’s runs. Polk scored twice and Vastine once.

Tennessee used a homer to left-center with one out in the bottom of the second to take a 1-0 lead.

Vanderbilt punched back in the top of the third and went on top 2-1. Polk led off the inning with a single and Vastine followed with a single of his own. Tennessee retired the next two batters but RJ Schreck delivered with a single to right that scored the pair and gave the Commodores the lead.

Davis Diaz and Vastine combined for one of the top defensive plays in all of college baseball this season in the bottom of the fourth. Diaz, who had shifted from third to right of second base, made a diving stop on a hard-hit grounder up the middle. Diaz then flipped the ball with his glove to Vastine who fired to first for a 5-6-3 putout.

Polk recorded another hit, this time a double, in his next at-bat in the fifth. Vastine laid down a bunt and beat the throw at first to put runners on the corners with no outs. Enrique Bradfield Jr. brought Polk home on a groundout to make it 3-1, Dores.

Tennessee hit a pair of solo home runs in the bottom of the ninth to pull even at 3-3 and send the first game in the series to extras. The Volunteers won the game on a home run by Griffin Merrit to lead off the bottom of the 12th.

Carter Holton turned in a quality start for the Commodores on the mound. The sophomore held the Volunteers to one run on two hits and struck out six over six innings of work.

Vanderbilt (29-9, 13-3 SEC) looks to even the series against Tennessee (24-14, 6-10 SEC) at 11 a.m. CT Saturday on ESPN2.