Vanderbilt outslugs Evansville for 10-7 road win

EVANSVILLE, Ind.-- The Vanderbilt Commodores scored eight runs in the final four innings and held off an Evansville eighth-inning rally for a 10-7 victory Tuesday at Braun Stadium. VU improved to 22-7 overall, while Evansville dropped to 14-14.

EVANSVILLE, Ind.-- The Vanderbilt Commodores scored eight runs in the final four innings and held off an Evansville eighth-inning rally for a 10-7 victory Tuesday at Braun Stadium. VU improved to 22-7 overall, while Evansville dropped to 14-14.

Evansville's Cody Strait hit a leadoff home run in the first inning to give the Purple Aces a quick 1-0 lead.

The Commodores scored two in the top of the second to take their first lead of the game. Cesar Nicolas hit a home run to lead off the inning with a blast to left-center field on a full count. Tony Mansolino followed with a double down the third base line and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Aaron Garza hit a single to left field scoring Mansolino.

The Commodores took a 3-1 lead in the sixth inning With two away. First baseman Mike Baxter reached base on a single to left and moved to third on a single by Mansolino. Baxter then scored on a double steal after he got caught in a rundown between third and home, but slid under the tag of pitcher Kai Tuomi. It is the second time this season the Commodores have scored on a steal from third. Antoan Richardson scored on a squeeze play against Lipscomb with Baxter at plate.

The Commodores batted around in the seventh inning and scored four runs. Two Commodores hit their first home runs of the season in the inning. With no out, freshman Bill Kleinschrodt hit his well beyoind the 400-foot wall in center field. After a Matt McGraner strikeout, junior Ryan Klosterman's shot over the left center field wall gave Vanderbilt a four-run lead, 5-1.

After an Evansville pitching change (Greenhouse for Tuomi) Riuchardson popped out in foul territory. With two away Warner Jones reached second on a single and error by the Aces' centerfielder Cody Strait and Nicolas was intentionally walked. Baxter then hit a shot up the middle scoring Jones and advancing Nicoals to third as Baxter moved to second on the throw. Following an Evansville pitching change, Mansolino reached base on an error by Mike Serafini that scored Nicoas. Garza grounded out for the final out of the inning.

VU added two more runs in the eighth extending its lead to 9-1.

UE scored five in the eighth inning to narrow the VU lead to 9-6. Jeff Sues, who came on in relief of Rhoden, walked the first two batters before striking out Serafini. Sues then overthrew Zack Simpson at second base on a potential double play which loaded the bases.

Heath Hamilton hit a single to right field that scored Strait. Jeff Fontaine reached on a single to shortstop Rucker Taylor but Taylor threw out Erik Lis as he rounded third. Michael Wagner then came in to releive Sues and walked three consecutive batters to allow two runs. Ryan Rote entered the game and gave up a hit to Strait that scored Tumility before striking out Smith for the final out of the inning.

In the ninth inning, Matt Zeller hit his first career home run on the first pitch he saw to give VU its tenth run of the game.

"It's good to see some offensive production from some kids like Zellar and Bill Kleinschrodt," head coach Tim Corbin said.

With one away, McGraner drew a walk and advanced to third in a single to right y Klosterman. Klosterman stole second and Richardson collected two RBI when his double down the third base line scored Klosterman.

Starting pitcher Stephen Shao (2-0) and Tyler Rhoden combined for 7 innings giving up one run on three hits. After allowing the leadoff home run, Shao didn't allow another run and gave up a total of three hits while striking out four. He faced 16 batters and threw 52 pitches. He retired his last four batters in order.

Freshman right-hander Tyler Rhoden came on in the fifth inning and retired the side in the fifth and sixth before two Purple Aces reached base on walks in the seventh. Rhoden went three innings and didn't allow a hit, while walking two and striking out three. He also threw 52 pitches in the contest.

"I thought Stephen Shao and Tyler Rhoden pitched very well," Corbin said. "They had great mound presence and punded the strike zone. After the way Stephen started, he shut them down and Rhoden didn't give up a hit."

Serafini began the ninth with a double to right field and moved to third on a walk by Rote. Serafini then scored on an RBI groundout by Hamilton. Rote finished the game by striking out Fontaine looking for the final out of the game as he earned his sixth save of the season.

Tuomi got the loss for Evansville as he allowed five runs on eight hits in 6.1 innings. He also walked one and struck out four.

Vanderbilt returns to action on Friday when the Commodores travel to Tuscaloosa, Ala., for a weekend series at Alabama. Friday's game will begin at 6:30 p.m., Saturday's at 4 p.m. and Sunday's at 2 p.m. Sunday's game will also be televised live by Comcast. Top Stories