Baseball: Vanderbilt 9 Tennessee 2

Caleb Cotham (VM/Don Yates)

KNOXVILLE- Vanderbilt scored four runs in the first inning and never looked back in a 9-2 win over Tennessee Saturday afternoon at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.

The Commodores claimed the series for second straight year and the fifth time in six years under head coach Tim Corbin to improve to 33-13 overall and 13-9 in the Southeastern Conference. The Vols fell to 25-22 and 11-12 in league action.

Like yesterday, the Commodores jumped out to a big lead early, scoring four runs in the first inning. David Macias walked, Dominic de la Osa walked and Pedro Alvarez singled to left-center to load the bases to open the first. Ryan Flaherty struck out looking before Alex Feinberg hit a sacrifice fly to bring in Macias. Shea Robin followed with a two-run double to left-center to make it 3-0. Andrew Giobbi scored Robin with a single to left to close out the inning.

"It's very important to put some runs on the board early, especially on the road," said Vanderbilt head coach Tim Corbin. "Every time we have gotten leads, we have been able to put holds on the innings and when you do that in someone else's ballpark, from a momentum standpoint that is huge."

Brad French singled to open the second, stole second, moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Macias and then scored on de la Osa's single to left.

Alex Feinberg's solo homer in the third extended the lead to 6-0. It was his second homer of the year and first since March 4 against Louisville.

De la Osa added another RBI single in the fifth to make it 7-0. Steven Liddle doubled to lead off the inning and scored on de la Osa's base hit through the left side.

Ryan Flaherty doubled to lead off the seventh and scored on Andrew Giobbi's RBI double to give VU an 8-0 advantage.

Flaherty added an RBI double in the eighth to bring in de la Osa who singled and stole second with two outs. It was de la Osa's third hit of the day, giving him 282 in his career, one short of Karl Nonemaker's school record of 283. For the second second straight game a Vanderbilt starting pitcher carried a shutout into the eighth as Caleb Cotham had the Vols scoreless until walking in a run with the bases loaded. UT added another run on a sacrifice fly to make it 9-2.

Cotham (7-3) picked up his team leading seventh win of the year, allowing two runs on six hits in seven innings of work with six strikeouts and four walks.

"It makes a lot easier to go out and pitch when the offense scores runs early," said Cotham. "You can maybe get away with a mistake or two and not be perfect. Being up that early I just wanted to pitch to contact and get some ground balls and luckily it worked out that way."

Drew Hayes came on in the eighth and retired the next six batters in order to end the game.

Dominic de la Osa went 3-for-3 and eight of nine starters recorded a hit on the afternoon. Ryan Flaherty, Shea Robin and Andrew Giobbi also had multi-hit days with two hits apiece.

The Commodores and Volunteers will close out the series tomorrow afternoon at 1 p.m. CT. VU will send Nick Christiani (5-2, 3.64 ERA) to the mound, while UT will counter with junior right-hander Ty'Relle Harris (2-1, 3.75 ERA).

Vanderbilt  411 100 110- 9(14)0
Tennessee   000 000 020- 260            
 

Cotham, Hayes (8) and Robin, Casali. Morgado, Rosas (5), Simpson (7) and Gomes, Forsythe. W- Cotham 7-3, L- Morgado 5-3. Sv- None. HR: VU: Feinberg (2) UT: None

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