Lack of big plays leaves Tennessee baseball stranded against Longwood

UT leaves 16 runners on base in 7-5 loss

Tennessee’s baseball team stranded 16 base runners Tuesday — including 11 in scoring position.

Yet that wasn’t the most telling statistic for UT coach Dave Serrano after a 7-5 loss to Longwood University at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.

It was the Vols’ fifth consecutive loss.

“I think the stat of the day and the last few games is us not making plays,” Serrano said. “You saw a team that had not as good of pitching as we threw today. They threw strikes. We hit some balls hard. They made every play when we hit balls. I know it’s what cost us this (past) weekend at Vanderbilt and it cost us some today.”

UT (13-14) committed three errors, misplayed a couple of fly balls in the outfield, and failed to cover first base on a sacrifice bunt that went for a single.

Longwood (13-16), a Division I program since 2007 located in Farmville, Va., is in its first year in the Big South Conference. The Lancers also committed three errors, but made some big plays in the outfield.

Right fielder Brandon Delk made a sliding catch on Andrew Lee’s fly ball for the third out with the bases loaded in the fourth. Center fielder Colton Konvicka made a diving catch starting off the fifth on Pierce Bily’s line drive.

Left fielder Kyri Washington chased down Will Maddox’s fly ball for the third out with the bases loaded in the seventh.

“I don’t expect our guys to make diving catches like their guy did in center field,” Serrano said. “We’re just not making plays that we have to make to be a successful team, and that’s what’s killing us.”

One play was particularly glaring in the eighth after Washington hit a one-out homer off losing pitcher Trevor Charpie (2-3) for a 5-3 Longwood lead.

Travis Burnette reached on a bunt single, and Delk drew a walk.

Blake Ream followed with a hard grounder that got past Maddox at third base for an error and then rolled under the glove of left fielder Vance Vizcaino for another error. Two runs scored for a 7-3 lead.

“The ball gets down the line on Will and then it goes all the way to the wall,” Serrano said. “We misplay it down the left-field line. Instead of giving the guy a base hit, we give an extra 180 feet.”

After scoring twice in the eighth, UT had the winning run at the plate in the ninth in Scott Price, who grounded out to end the game.

“We left a lot of guys on base today,” Serrano said. “There’s no way to look around it.”

Tennessee starter Trevor Bettencourt pitched four innings and gave up three runs (two earned) on six hits.

The Vols are back in action Friday for the start of a three-game series at home against South Carolina.

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Comments » 17

Banner writes:

Wow! Young or not this is a bad team. Can't catch fly balls. I was at the Farragut game and they caught fly balls. No coaching. Can't win the close ones. Can't hit either. No pop!

ReeseHallRelic writes:

No coaching? Because they "can't catch fly balls"? Are you joking? SEC players can't catch fly balls, and you're blaming that on a lack of coaching?

Have you ever played the game?

WetumpkaThumpa writes:

Vols get stiffed by Longwood!?!?!

Banner writes:

in response to ReeseHallRelic:

No coaching? Because they "can't catch fly balls"? Are you joking? SEC players can't catch fly balls, and you're blaming that on a lack of coaching?

Have you ever played the game?

Don't recruit them if they can't catch fly balls. Who did everyone blame when the football team couldn't stop anyone on defense? Did they blame the players for poor tackling? Poor positioning, poor game management? Nobody blamed them. Sal and CDD got torched. Explain how this is different? Explain how an outfielder in the SEC can't catch a fly ball? Or the catcher making 2 errors against Vandy that cost them the game? Please enlighten me baseball genius. One of two possible explanations.
1. The player isn't good enough to be here.
2. He isn't coached properly.
Or a little of 1 and 2.

Ichabod writes:

Lets be frank. In the last 12 months UT baseball is 15-35. Little to no improvement, still cant cover the basics, (as in leaving men in scoring position) Serranos talk is now running a bit cheap, and he is starting to become the broken record that was CTR.
Its getting really old, and I will not return to LNS until there seems to be some desire by the players to win ballgames.....I haven't seen that in the 6 games I have attended this season.
Big Yawn - talks cheap Coach - DO SOMETHING

NowHearThis writes:

Longwood?

I thought this was an April Fool's joke but then I remembered it was Bushwood University from Caddyshack.

The Curse of the Fulmer is alive and well.

DC82_Vol writes:

More men's athletic mediocrity.

arkyvol writes:

its all Raleigh's fault.

voloffaith writes:

Dismal and the Negativettes now appearing on GVX.Ok they messed up. Season is young and team is as well. Beat the feathered chickens from down here in SC. Goal is to get to Hoover with a lot of ball to be played.

THEKIDWISCONSIN writes:

Really, really wanting & waiting for this team to turn the corner. The corner looks further away than it did just a week or two ago.

Yes, the season is still young as well as the team. But these weekday struggles with non-SEC teams is really troublesome.

Gotta get it going.

Go BaseVOLS

MetroplexMojo writes:

in response to WetumpkaThumpa:

Vols get stiffed by Longwood!?!?!

The Vols lost to Ron Jeremy's alma mater.

HopeisNotaCourseofAction writes:

Only way they get to Hoover is if they buy their own vacuum cleaners.

huntined#565710 writes:

What went with all those big stories about we would be playing for championships in two years with this coach.

NashvillePreds writes:

in response to DC82_Vol:

More men's athletic mediocrity.

At this point, I think mediocrity would be a terrific achievement for the UT baseball team.

GBOEngineer writes:

in response to DC82_Vol:

More men's athletic mediocrity.

the baseball team needs to improve to get to mediocre...

Ichabod writes:

15 comments in 24 hours,
pretty much tell the tale .......
Pathetic Dave. You make well more than a quarter million a year, all in - so the the KoolAide you've sold is a bit tart right now....
DELIVER MAN

ReeseHallRelic writes:

In case you I-want-it-all-and-I-want-it-now wannabes didn't know, coaches are not magicians. They need to have X amount of players to fill out a roster. They get the best players they can, teach them the best that they can, and hope for the best when they take the field. There are major leaguers who can't catch fly balls. There are major league catchers who have been known to make two errors in a game. It happens. That's why it's a long season.

Maybe Coach Serrano is the answer, maybe he's not. But you have a better plan? You think YOU could do a better job? Think again. With your "approach" to the game, you'd be lucky to survive a season, much less win.

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