The Commodores improved to 32-13 overall and 12-9 in Southeastern Conference play, while the Volunteers fell to 25-21 and 11-11 in league action.
Macias finished with a 4-for-4 night at the plate with two doubles, two runs scored and three RBI. He walked in his final at-bat as he was trying for a career-high five hits.
Sophomore ace Mike Minor (5-3) was cruising through the game, carrying a two-hit shutout into the eighth before tiring. He ended up giving up five runs, all in the final two innings, on seven hits in 8.2 innings of work with five strikeouts and two walks.
"It's nice to win the first game because you get the upper hand,” said Minor. “Even if you lose tomorrow, you can still win the series. The pressure is on them and we have all the confidence going into tomorrow."
Ryan Flaherty’s three-run homer in the first staked the Commodores to an early 3-0 lead. David Macias led off the game with a single and moved to second when Dominic de la Osa was hit by a pitch by UT starter Nick Hernandez (1-4). Pedro Alvarez then grounded into a fielder’s choice eliminating de la Osa at second, before Flaherty responded with his 12th homer of the year. It was a towering shot, over the scoreboard in right and into the parking lot behind the outfield wall.
The Dores added another run in the third on an RBI grounder by Alvarez and another in the fourth on a RBI double by Macias to extend the lead to 5-0.
VU added three more runs in the sixth to break the game open. Steven Liddle had a RBI double and Macias added a two-run double, his fourth hit of the night, to make it 8-0.
P.J. Polk broke up Mike Minor’s shutout bid with a solo homer in the eighth. It was his third homer of the year. Two outs later Cody Liles hit a two-run homer to left to make it 8-3. It was his sixth homer of the year.
Jarred Frazier’s two-out, two-run double knocked Minor out of the game in the ninth. Brett Jacobson got pinch-hitter Shawn Griffin (UT’s leading home run hitter with 11) to ground out to him to end the game and pick up his third save of the year.
"I swung the bat pretty well tonight,” said Macias of his four-hit effort. It was good to see Flash (Flaherty) get that big hit in the first. Mikie (Minor) pitched really well and Jacobson came in and shut the door."
Shea Robin and Steven Liddle each had two hits to help lead the Commodore attack, while P.J. Polk led UT with two hits of his own.
The Commodores and Volunteers will play the second game of the three-game set tomorrow afternoon at 3 p.m. CT. VU will send Caleb Cotham (6-3, 3.77 ERA) to the mound, while UT will counter with freshman southpaw Bryan Morgado (5-2, 3.20 ERA). The game will be televised regionally on Fox Sports Net.
Vanderbilt 301 103 000- 8(12)0
Tennessee 000 000 000- 571
Minor, Jacobson (9) and Robin. Hernandez, Crinkovich (7), Leffler (9) and Gomes. W-Minor 5-3, L-Hernandez 1-4. Sv-Jacobson (3). HR: VU: Flaherty (12). UT: Polk (3), Liles (6)