The No. 19 Tennessee Vols defeated Northern Kentucky, 15-1, at Lindsey Nelson Stadium to win their eight consecutive game of the season. The Vols improve to 8-0 on the season while Northern Kentucky drops to 0-8. Starter Christian Delashmit (1-0) got the win, while Norse starter Noah Richardson (0-1) took the loss.
Walk it Out
Tennessee broke out for six runs in the third inning and only recorded one hit during their offensive explosion.
Proctor Mercer entered to pitch for Northern Kentucky and immediately walked Zach Daniels. Jake Rucker was the next batter up and took a base on balls as well. Alerick Soularie recorded the lone hit for the Vols in the inning, a rocket to short to load the bases. Jordan Beck walked to give Tennessee a 3-0 lead. Trey Lipscomb popped out to become the first out of the inning, but Landon Gray was walked right after to give the Vols a 4-0 advantage.
The Norse made a call to the bullpen and brought out TJ Graves, who promptly walked the first two men he faced. Luc Lipcius hit into a fielder's choice, which drove in another run for Tennessee to make the game 7-0. The Vols batted around and both Daniels and Rucker walked, with the latter bringing in the final run of the inning.
Overall, Tennessee scored six runs on one hit and eight walks to take an 8-0 lead in the bottom of the third.
Starter Christian Delashmit and relievers Ethan Anderson and Kirby Connell, made their first appearances for the Vols on the mound.
Delashmit threw for 4.2 innings, giving up three hits, and striking out seven batters while walking just one. He was taken out of the game in the fifth inning, with runners at second and third with two outs. Will Mabrey replaced him on the bump and got Sam Hedges to strike out to end the inning.
“Pretty good,” said Delashmit. “I’ve been working with coach Anderson on my changeup pretty much all Fall and with the sinker as well. Both pitches were working really well today. This was the first time that I’ve been hyped up about pitching since freshman year of highschool. The adrenaline was pumping and the team was out here yelling for me. It was unreal.”
Ethan Anderson and Kirby Connell combined for 4.0 innings and gave up four hits, one run, while striking out four. The lone run was against Anderson, who was greeted by a homer to deep center field by Jake Murray.
“Anderson got his first work of the season after a hammy had been bothering him, so I came to work excited about all three of those things,” said head coach Tony Vitello. “To be honest, all three kids handled it great. It’s all kind of the deal if you just throw strikes. Delashmit showed you that he is a potential starter for the rest of his career here. The other two guys are gonna be relievers for us in crucial spots for the next few years, if not this year.”
Landon Gray and Pete Derkay hit home runs for Tennessee. This is the sixth time this season that the Vols have hit multiple home runs in a game. Overall, Tennessee has 13 home runs this year. For comparison, the Vols had just 11 games last season in which they hit multiple homers.
“I just try to go up there and have a quality at-bat every single time, cause I’m coming off the bench and that’s my role and I want to stay locked in every time I’m up,” said Derkay. “Everybody wants to play, obviously. If the team needs me off the bench to get a big hit, then I’m gonna do that to the best of my ability.”
Tennessee’s next match is against UNC Asheville on Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.