In a battle of two of the top hitting teams in the country, right-hander Kelsey Morrison tossed a two-hit shutout, leading No. 19/19 Tennessee to a 6-0, game-two win over Liberty, Tuesday at Sherri Parker Lee Stadium.
Tennessee improves to 28-5 on the season after sweeping today's doubleheader, 6-1 and 6-0. Liberty falls to 18-15 overall. Entering today, the Vols were tied for 13th in NCAA Division I with a .333 team batting average, while Liberty was 15th at .330.
Morrison (1-0) faced one batter over the minimum, striking out six batters during a complete-game, two-hit effort.
Chase Cassady (4-7) drew the loss, allowing five runs on seven hits, walking one and striking out one in 4 1/3 innings pitched. Stephanie Marlowe gave up one unearned run on one hit, fanning one and walking two in 1 2/3 innings of work.
Jenna Holcomb, Meghan Gregg and Chelsea Seggern all registered two hits and one double each, while Gregg registered two RBI. Brooke Vines went 1-for-2 with three RBI.
For Liberty, Jaclyn Amader and Jasmeen Click posted one hit apiece.
The Vols jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Aubrey Leach drew a leadoff walk, and scored from first on a double by Gregg. A wild pitch sent Gregg to third, before Vines sent a sacrifice fly to center, scoring the second run.
Tennessee added one run to its advantage with a third-inning rally. Holcomb dropped a one-out double into left field. Gregg then lined an RBI single to left, plating Holcomb to make it 3-0.
Amader broke up Morrison's bid at a perfect game, dropping a single down the left-field line with two outs in the fifth. She was then erased at second trying to extend the hit to a double.
The hosts doubled their lead in the bottom of the fifth. Leach hit a one-out double, and went to third on a single by Holcomb. Marlowe entered the circle, walking Gregg. Vines then hit a two-run single to right, with a third runner crossing the plate on an error. Marlowe worked through the rest of the inning and Liberty trailed, 6-0, entering the sixth.
Click singled with two outs during the sixth inning. Tori Zavodny then sent a grounder up the middle, but second baseman Leach made a fine play for the third out.
Marlowe tossed a 1-2-3 sixth inning, bringing Liberty to the plate for the final time. However, Morrison pitched a three-batter seventh to complete the shutout.
The Lady Flames will play a single game at NC State, tomorrow at 5 p.m. at Dail Softball Stadium.