College baseball: Tennessee earns first win over No. 1-ranked opponent since 2009 in win over Florida
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee battled against No. 1-ranked Florida to take Game Two of the series on Rocky Top, as the Vols held off the Gators for a 5-2 win on Saturday.
With the win, Tennessee moves up to 25-22 on the season and 7-16 in conference play, while Florida is now 39-8 (15-7 SEC) on the year.
Tennessee totaled six hits against Florida led by junior Nick Senzel (1-for-3, HR, RBI), while seniors Derek Lance (1-for-3, RBI), Chris Hall (1-for-3, RBI) and sophomore Brodie Leftridge (1-for-4, RBI) each contributed an RBI to the Vols' offensive efforts vs. the top-rated team in the country.
The Gators began the ballgame by plating one run during the top of the first frame to take a quick lead over the Vols.
During the third inning, Hall kickstarted UT's comeback as he singled up the middle, reaching base safely before Senzel homered to left field and gave Tennessee the 2-1 go-ahead lead over UF.
Florida began the top of the sixth with a Buddy Reed triple to center field, resulting in a run scored via wild pitch to even the score with the Volunteers at 2-2.
The Vols regained the lead over Florida starting with pinch-hitter Leno Ramirez reaching on a hit-by-pitch. Lance stepped up to bat and singled up the middle, giving Ramirez the opening to score as Lance earned the third RBI of the night for the Vols.
Leftridge then came to the plate and tripled down the right field line, scoring Lance. Hall then sent a ball to left field in the next at-bat and Leftridge raced to home plate, putting UT further ahead of No. 1-ranked Florida, 5-2.
Lefthander Zach Warren started for the Vols against Florida ace A.J. Puk, pitching 5.1 innings and allowing two runs on seven hits with four consecutive scoreless innings before senior Andy Cox stepped on the mound for relief.
Cox (3-5) tossed 3.2 scoreless innings vs. the Gators, allowing just two hits to close out the game and secure the 5-2 win for the Vols.
Vol Baseball Quick Hits
• Senior Andy Cox earned his third win of the season, tossing 3.2 scoreless innings against the No. 1-ranked Gators.
• Senior Vincent Jackson (1-for-3) extended his current hit streak to a season-long 12 games.
• Previously tied with Vincent Jackson, junior Nick Senzel took the lead in most home runs on the season as he hit his eighth homer during Game Two against Florida on Saturday night.
• Saturday's attendance at Lindsey Nelson Stadium: 2,197
• On Deck for the Vols: The series finale between Tennessee and the No. 1-ranked Florida Gators begins on Sunday, May 8 at 2 p.m. ET, with live game action available for viewing via SEC Network+ broadcast stream.