Vanderbilt Downs South Carolina 11-3 In SEC Opener
April 15, 2005
Columbia, S.C. - Junior right-hander Jensen Lewis limited South Carolina to six hits, none after the fourth inning in a complete game Friday night and Vanderbilt hit three two run home runs in an 11-3 victory in the first of a three game Southeastern Conference baseball series.
The Commodores improved to 22-10 overall, 6-7 in the SEC, while South Carolina dropped to 28-7, 8-5. Lewis' first complete game improved his record to 6-1. He retired the final 16 batters that he faced. Senior right-hander Jason Fletcher, 4-2, allowed five hits and five earned runs in 4 1/3 innings and was charged with the loss.
Lewis struck out nine and walked two, seven of his strikeouts coming in the final five innings before a Sarge Frye Field crowd of 4,320.
After a walk to Stephen Shao, Warner Jones staked Vanderbilt to a 2-0 first inning lead with his fifth home run. South Carolina got a run back in the bottom of the first on a Steven Tolleson single followed by a RBI double by Steve Pearce.
Each team scored once in the third inning and Brendan Winn, returning to the South Carolina lineup after missing seven consecutive games with a bad back, hit his ninth home run to tie it at 3-3 in the bottom of the fourth inning. Lewis took charge after that and South Carolina's only base runner the remainder of the game reached on a two out fourth inning Vanderbilt error.
Matt Zeller hit his first home run with Antoan Richardson on base in the fifth inning to break the tie and Brian Hernandez hit his second, following a walk to Jones, in the eighth to put Vanderbilt up 7-3.
The Commodores erupted for four insurance runs in the top of the ninth inning on a walk and five singles to turn the game into a rout.
Mike Baxter, Jones, Hernandez, Zeller and Richardson had two hits apiece for Vanderbilt. Jones and Hernandez drove in three runs. No South Carolina batter had more than one hit.
The second game of the series is scheduled for 4 p.m., Saturday. Left-hander Ryan Mullins, 3-0, 3.41 ERA is scheduled to start for Vanderbilt with right-hander Zac McCamie, 7-1, 2.06, the scheduled South Carolina starter.