#17 Tennessee Baseball Completes Sweep Of Georgia State

Sunday, March 7, 2021
No. 17 Tennessee completed its series sweep of Georgia State in dominant fashion with a 7-0 shutout win in Sunday's series finale at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.

Five pitchers combined for the Vols' first shutout of the year with junior right hander Elijah Pleasants earning his second victory this week after tossing 2.1 scoreless innings in relief.

Junior third baseman Jake Rucker capped his impressive series with another strong performance at the plate, going 2-for-4 and setting a new career high with four RBI.

Liam Spence and Drew Gilbert also had big days with two hits each.
Spence set a career high with three runs scored while Gilbert hit his third home run of the season with a two-run blast that was part of a four-run third inning that put Tennessee firmly in the driver's seat.


Sophomore right hander Mark McLaughlin made his first-career weekend start and was effective in 3.2 innings of work. The Georgia native did not allow a run and gave up just two hits while striking out three batters on the day.

Pleasants, Zander SechristCamden Sewell and Gilbert combined to pitch the final 5.1 innings for UT, giving up just four hits while striking out seven batters in that stretch.

After Rucker gave the Big Orange an early 1-0 lead with an RBI single in the first, the Vols (11-2) used the long ball to increase their lead to five runs in the third inning. A pair of two-run homers by Rucker and Gilbert helped Tennessee score four runs in frame.

UT added two more runs in the sixth on a bases-loaded walk by Rucker and a groundout off the bat of Jordan Beck to cap the scoring and give the Vols a commanding 7-0 lead.

Tennessee finished the day with a great relay throw from left field to cut down Blaine Marchman at home plate for the game's final out to preserve the shutout.

Georgia State (4-9) starter Chad Treadway was the losing pitcher after getting tagged for four runs on four hits in 2.2 innings of work.

The Vols will hit the road once again for a Tuesday midweek contest at Charlotte before coming back home to host UNC Greensboro next weekend.
 

NOTABLE

RUCKER'S BIG WEEKEND: Veteran third baseman Jake Rucker had a huge weekend at the plate for the Vols. The junior from Greenbrier, Tennessee, batted .500 for the series and led the Vols with a homer and six RBI. Rucker has reached base is all 13 games this season and is currently on a nine-game hit streak after this weekend's performances.

YOU'LL GET NOTHING AND LIKE IT: The Vols posted their first shutout of the season on Sunday and have now recorded 14 total shutouts since the start of the 2019 season, a span of 91 games. For comparison, UT had just 13 shutouts in its previous 269 games prior to 2019 (2014-18). 

BREAK OUT THE BROOMS: With Sunday's win, Tennessee recorded its second series sweep of the season and the ninth since Tony Vitello was named head coach in 2018. Both of UT's sweeps this season have come against schools from the Peach State after opening the year with three victories at Georgia Southern.

Tennessee Series Sweeps by Year
2021: 2 // 2020: 2 // 2019: 3 // 2018: 2

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