The Big Orange broke in front on the scoreboard in the top of the second with one of its patented two-out rallies. The outburst got started harmlessly enough with Dotson getting hit by a pitch leading off the inning. A ground ball to second and a fielder's choice that retired Dotson on the base paths threatened to end the scoring opportunity before it even got underway.
Tarango set an important two-out tone for the Lady Vol offense by lacing a two-bagger, moving junior first baseman Melissa Brown over within 60 feet from pay dirt. Lewis ripped a hard shot to third that forced third baseman Caitlin Schultze to her right. The ball ricocheted off the tip of her glove and her throw from her knees to first was late as Brown scored to make it 1-0. Junior third baseman Raven Chavanne walked to load the bases and marked the 18th consecutive game that the Thousand Oaks, Calif., native had reached base successfully. That set the stage for a clutch pinch hit from Davin as the Fresno, Calif., product ripped the first offering she received from Loree through the infield, scoring two to make it 3-0.
Gibson walked to re-load the bags with the clean-up hitter Shipman coming to the plate. It didn't take long for the 6-1 shortstop to unload them, promptly crushing her third career grand slam to stretch the UT advantage to a commanding seven tallies. A single by Dotson kept things going before a chopper to short finally concluded the frame. Before the two-out assault had come to an end, 11 batters had stepped to the dish in tying for the most runs (seven) put up by the Lady Vol offense in a single frame in 2012.
Suddenly in possession of a huge seven-run lead, UT's 6-0 right hander didn't mess around with the middle of Auburn's line-up in the bottom half of the second. Pitching into her defense, Renfroe got a pop-up from right fielder Lauren Guzman, a liner to second base off the bat of catcher Elizabeth Eisterhold and a high fly out to center by first baseman Caitlin Jordan that was tracked down by UT sophomore Tory Lewis.
The advantage continued to expand in the top of the fourth as the Big Orange again struck with two retired in the inning. Chavanne christened the frame with a lead-off walk and soon moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by senior catcher Ashley Andrews. With two down in the inning, Shipman reached via an error at short and quickly swiped her 11th base of the season, putting a pair of Lady Vols in scoring position. Dotson came through with a clutch, two-RBI base knock through the infield as the UT lead expanded to 9-0.
In the circle Renfroe was dominating, striking out four of five Auburn batters over a stretch that included the end of the third and beginning of the fourth frames. Unfortunately, that came to a sudden end with two outs in the bottom of the fourth as Guzman blasted a solo HR just over the scoreboard in left center. The AU big fly ended the UT hurler's bid for a perfect game as she has retired 11 consecutive Tiger hitters until that point. Two-Out Hitting Leads #9 Tennessee to a 9-1 (5 inn.) Win Over Auburn University of Tennessee Athletics