Dores lose series but add win in Game 3 vs. Matadors

Scoring runs have become an issue of late but not on Sunday! Vanderbilt had the sticks going in their 11-3 win over Cal-State Northridge and improve their overall record to 7-5. It was nice to see the team getting the sticks active and let's hope it continues as the Commodores host Central Arkansas on Tuesday afternoon.

After dropping the first two games to CSUN, Vanderbilt needed to find a win on Sunday and luckily the bats finally decided to show up in the Commodores 11-3 win over the Matadors. 

Vanderbilt put together a seven run 5th inning that blew the game wide open but the table was set early by Commodores 2nd baseman Ethan Paul

The sophomore left handed hitter slugged two solo home runs that put the Commodores ahead early and set the standard for how the team needed to hit on the day, to pick up a win. Paul's first shot was a line drive to right center field while his second home run was blasted over the green wall in left field. It is a good sign to see Paul hit the ball to both sides of the field and hit it with power. 

A part of the seven run 5th, Vanderbilt outfielder Jeren Kendall put the Dores further ahead after he cleared the bases from an opposite field blast and double, off the green wall to put the team ahead by a 9-1 margin. Kendall went 1-4 on the day but had 3 RBI's in his effort.

Vanderbilt pushed across two more runs in the sixth and never would look back. The Commodores had nine hits on the day but the biggest stat of all is four. That's how many times the team would strikeout on the day and that has been a problem early on in the season. The approach at the plate on Sunday was much better and if that mindset remains, Vanderbilt will eventually hit the ball much better than it has. 

The other story on the day was the continued pitching efforts from freshman Drake Fellows. The Illinois native has been superb thus far on the year and on Sunday, the right hander tossed six innings, allowing eight hits while striking out five batters and only giving up one earned run. 

Fellows (2-0) has been outstanding in 2017 so far and his performance on Sunday was a big reason why the Commodores pulled off the victory. Fellows was relieved by the bullpen in the 7th and while two runs was earned by CSUN, they did a solid job of keeping the Matador bats quiet. 

The series was lost on Saturday but a win Sunday was needed. Vanderbilt is having a hard time right now with errors and pushing across runners in scoring position. Sunday's win displayed the capabilities that this team can play with, so the VandyBoys need to just keep working and improve as the season goes on.

Vanderbilt returns to the diamond on Tuesday with the first pitch set to be thrown at 4:00 pm Central. Central Arkansas comes to Nashville for a two game set Tuesday and Wednesday.

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