Baseball Vols face big week

The Vol baseball team, off to a 9-1 start after losing 3-1 to West Virginia on Saturday and beating the Mountaineers 13-3 on Sunday, plays five games this week against teams who made the 2002 NCAA regionals.

The Vols host Louisville Tuesday and Wednesday,then host Miami on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. All games start at 3 p.m., except for Friday's and Saturday's, which begin at 2.

Limited to four hits on Saturday, the Vols bounced back with a 17-hit effort on Sudany in trouncing WVU. Michael Rivera and Chad LeGate led the hitting parade with three hits apiece. Derek Tharpe got the mound win, pitching six innings of five-hit ball and allowing just one earned run.

Patrick Green, Brandon Growe and Steve Wesley pitched the final three innings, combining to allow three hits and two runs.

Through 10 games, the bullpen is 5-0 with two saves and a 1.52 ERA in 41.1 innings with 45 strikeouts and nine walks. Opponents are batting .196 against Vol relievers.

UT's pitching staff has a 4.8 strikeout-to-walk ratio. The hurlers are averaging 9.3 strikeouts per game against 1.9 walks per game.

Luke Hochevar has pitched 11 1/3 scoreless innings with 14 strikeouts and one walk.

LeGate is the Vols' top hitter to date at .429. He has driven in five of his six runs with two out.

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