KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- The Tennessee Tech softball team tried to put up a fight against the highly ranked University of Tennessee, but fell to the Lady Vols, 12-3, in five innings. The Lady Vols, currently ranked third or fifth in the country depending on the poll, held the Golden Eagles to seven hits in the contest.
Sophomore Hannah Eldridge had a standout performance blasting a home run in the fourth and driving home Tech's second run in the fifth.
Tech's big hits came from Eldridge and senior Melody Christian. Though few, the contacts were meaningful ones as the sophomore, Eldridge, blasted a shot over the left field line at one of the most storied stadiums in the country, Sherri Parker Lee Stadium. Eldridge's second contact drove in Tech's run after Christian connected for a single up the middle.
The Lady Vols scored three runs in the second inning against senior Claudia Harke (4-5). Tennessee's Cheyanne Tarango homered as the first batter in the second inning after battling back from a full count. Immediately following the four-base hit, the Lady Vols collected a triple, and two singles to take a 3-0 lead. Tennessee would score again in the third, but the Golden Eagles finally lit up the scoreboard in the fourth.
Eldridge blasted her home run, but the Lady Vols countered with two runs in the fourth. Tech responded in the fifth with two runs to cut Tennessee's lead in half, thanks to the swift bats of Angi Sakamoto, Eldridge, and Christian. Sakamoto singled to first base, followed by Christian's single. Eldridge sent a line drive up the middle for her second RBI of the day, sending Sakamoto home. Christian would then score on a passed ball.
With the threat of the Golden Eagles on the brink, the Lady Vols scored six runs in the bottom of the fifth to end the game 12-3.
Tech returns to action Saturday and Sunday when it hosts Belmont. The Golden Eagles will face off against the Bruins in a doubleheader at 1 p.m. Saturday and play a single game Sunday at 1 p.m.