The Official Xavier @ Tennessee Game Thread (Tues. March 19) (6PM EST SEC NET+)

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NO SIR EEE

The Sultan Of Swat
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#1
Xavier Musketeers
(9-11) Overall (0-0) Big East

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@
Tennessee Volunteers
(18-3) Overall (1-2) SEC


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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – Following a hard-fought road series at Alabama to open SEC play last weekend, No. 7/8 Tennessee returns to the friendly confines of Lindsey Nelson Stadium for four home games this week, starting with a Tuesday midweek tilt against Xavier. The Vols will look to get back in the win column following back-to-back losses in Tuscaloosa after winning the series opener 11-3 on Friday night.

BROADCAST INFO

Tuesday's game will be streamed on SEC Network+ and the ESPN app with Zack Nelson (PxP) and Caylan Arnold (analyst) on the call.

Fans can also listen to John Wilkerson and Vince Ferrara call the action on the Vol Network (FM 99.1/AM 990). A free audio stream will also be available on UTSports.com, the Tennessee Athletics App and the Varsity App.

PROJECTED STARTING PITCHERS

LHP Zander Sechrist (0-0, 4.05 ERA) vs. RHP Jonathan Kelly (0-0, 3.65 ERA)

SERIES HISTORY

Overall: Tennessee leads, 6-1
in Knoxville: Tennessee leads, 5-1
in Cincinnati: N/A
at Neutral Sites: Tennessee leads, 1-0
Last Meeting: W, 10-1 – April 26, 2022 in Knoxville

After dropping the first ever meeting in the series back in 1965, UT has reeled off six consecutive wins against the Musketeers.

NOTABLE

Non-Conference Success and Midweek Dominance
Tennessee has been dominant against non-conference opponents since the start of the 2019 season, posting a 137-24 record in that span. UT went 29-6 against non-SEC foes during the 2023 season, including a 5-1 mark in the postseason, and is 17-1 against such opponents this year.

The Vols have not lost a regular-season non-conference weekend series since 2020 (Wright State) and have swept 14 of their 16 regular-season non-conference weekend series since 2020. UT has swept all three of its home weekend series this season. Under head coach Tony Vitello, Tennessee is an impressive 70-10 overall in midweek games.

Record Chasers
The Vols have two players within striking distance of the program's career home run record of 40 held by Luc Lipcius. Blake Burke enters this week with 37 career homers after hitting one in last weekend's series at Alabama. The junior from Brentwood, California is tied for fourth in program history with Doug Hecker (1990-92).

Fellow junior Christian Moore is tied for seventh in UT history with 34 career jacks after homering in Saturday's contest against the Crimson Tide.

Vols Remain in Top 10
Despite dropping their first series of the year, the Vols held steady in the top 10 of this week's D1Baseball.com rankings, coming in at No. 8. They are also ranked No. 7 in the USA Today Coaches Poll.

OPPONENT SCOUT

Xavier Musketeers (9-11, 0-0 BIG EAST)
  • Head Coach: Billy O'Conner (7th season)
  • 2023 Record: 39-25 (14-7 BIG EAST)
  • 2023 Postseason: NCAA Nashville Regional (2-2)
  • 2024 BIG EAST Preseason Poll: 2nd
  • Preseason All-Conference Selections (4):
    • 1B Matt McCormick
    • 2B Jared Cushing
    • 3B Grant Stephenson
    • RHP Luke Hoskins

ON DECK

Tennessee hosts its first conference series this season as the Ole Miss Rebels come to town this weekend. Friday's series opener is slated for a 6:30 p.m. first pitch. Saturday's contest will start at 6 p.m. and Sunday's finale is scheduled to begin at 1 p.m. All three games will be streamed online on SEC Network+ and the ESPN app.
 
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