''I want to give Austin Peay credit; they came to play and made us work hard all day long,'' said Co-Head Coach Ralph Weekly. ''Our kids were coming back from a couple of well-deserved days off and I don't think we were as sharp as we could have been. We were happy for Stephanie (Humphrey), who turned in two solid performances in earning a win and a save this afternoon. Christy (Anch) continues to recover from her back injury and gave us four solid innings in the second game. The lefties in the middle of our order, Kristi (Durant), Amber (Rhinehart) and Lauren (Mattox), had a good day at the plate and carried us offensively.''
Freshman Katherine Card (Soddy Daisy, Tenn.) walked to lead off the bottom of the first and was sacrificed to second on a bunt from classmate Kristi Durant (Placentia, Calif.). Sophomore Amber Rhinehart (Citrus Heights, Calif.) increased her hitting streak to nine games with a single up the middle to bring Card with the initial run of the contest.
Tennessee added some insurance in the sixth, when Mattox ripped a double to straightaway center field to score freshmen pinch runners Kristen Hays (Phoenix, Ariz.) and Sarah Fekete (Maryville, Tenn.). Durant had opened the frame with a single to center and Rhinehart's two-bagger pushed Hays over to third. Mattox followed with her third double of the season to provide the Orange with a 3-0 cushion and to end the afternoon for Austin Peay sophomore pitcher Lydia Money, who had kept UT off-balance during throughout the contest. Freshman Stacey Jennings (Aurora, Colo.) earned a free pass from freshman reliever Kari Gore and Mattox and Jennings would advance on a ground out by junior Angela Brewer (East Ridge, Tenn.). A two-out RBI single by rookie Chemil Washington (Vancouver, Wash.) off Gore's shin would allow Mattox to scamper home with the fourth run.
Anch was perfect through three innings and allowed just an infield hit to sophomore Candice Haefele in the fourth to raise her mark to 5-3. Over 4.1 frames, the righty also struck out four. Humphrey, the winner of game one, notched her third save with 2.2 innings in which she fanned five and surrendered two hits. Rhinehart finished 2-for-3.
Tennessee returns to action Friday, when it hosts the First Tennessee Round Robin against Liberty (8-17) and Western Kentucky (15-14). The Lady Vols will face the Flames at 1 p.m. and take on the Hilltoppers at 3 p.m.