"Hochever pitched very well," VU Head Coach Tim Corbin said. "He got through the first nine guys pretty well and made some things happen. There wasn't much we could do. For a guy to pitch a complete game in the SEC – you have to credit him."
VU's junior lefthander Jeremy Sowers went 7 innings, giving up five runs (four earned) on 12 hits. He struck out four and walked one.
Tennessee scored two runs in the first inning. Josh Alley led off with a standup double to right center field and moved to third when Eli Iorg singled to first base, and moved to second on an error when first baseman Mike Baxter overthrew Sowers covering first base, scoring Alley. Iorg then moved to third base on a passed ball and scored when Alex Suarez grounded out to the short stop. The Vols threatened in the third inning with bases loaded and not outs, but Sowers struck out Suarez and forced Chase Headley to hit into a double play to end the inning.
Hochevar retired 10 consecutive Commodore batters to open the game, before Baxter singled in the fourth inning.
VU got on the board in the fifth inning when Tony Mansolino scored on an error by left fielder Iorg. Mansolino reached base on a walk and moved to second on a wild pitch. He moved to third on a single by Jonathan Douillard and both runners advanced on the error by Iorg.
The Volunteers added two runs in the bottom of the fifth. Alley singled to left field and moved to third on a single up the middle by Iorg. Alley scored on a Kyle Norrid single moving Iorg to third. Suarez picked up his second RBI in the game when his single to left field scored Iorg.
The Commodores narrowed UT's lead to 4-3 in the sixth inning. Ryan Klosterman led off the inning with a triple – his sixth of the season which ties the VU school record – and scored on a single by Baxter. Baxter moved to second when Cesar Nicolas reached base after being hit by a pitch. Worth Scott loaded the bases and Baxter scored when Tony Mansolino hit a grounder to the right side of the infield. It was Mansolino's 23rd RBI of the season which matches his 2003 total.
UT extended its lead to 5-3 when Nick Crowe scored on Iorg's fourth hit of the game in the sixth inning.
UT totaled 12 hits led by Iorg who went 4-4 and Alley who was 3-4. The Commodores totaled six hits, including two from Klosterman and Baxter.
Sophomore right-hander Jensen Lewis pitched one inning of relief retiring all three batters he faced.
The second game of the series is scheduled for Saturday at 4 pm ET (3 pm ET) with sophomore left-hander Ryan Mullins on the mound for the Commodores. Fox Sports Net will televise the contest, with Dave Neal and Larry Conley calling the action.
Score by Innings R H E ------------------------------------------- Vanderbilt.......... 000 012 000 - 3 6 1 Tennessee........... 200 021 00X - 5 12 2 ------------------------------------------- Win - Hochevar (3-1). Loss - J. Sowers (7-4). Save - None. Start: 7:05 Time: 2:16 Attendance: 1503