NASHVILLE -- No. 2 Vanderbilt slammed Evansville 13-0 Wednesday night at Hawkins Field to improve to 9-1 on the year.
The Commodores wasted no time scoring single runs in the first three innings and took a 4-0 lead into the bottom of the sixth when the Dores exploded for nine runs. Connor Harrell started the rally with a triple off the base of the left field wall and scored on Spencer Navin's single. Tony Kemp kept the rally moving with a two-run single before Harrell came up with the bases loaded for his second at-bat of the inning. The senior capped the rally he started with his third career grand slam with a shot off the scoreboard in left field. The Dores did all the damage in the sixth on just four hits with 12 men coming to the plate and all nine men that reached scoring.
Conde continued swinging a hot bat going 2-for-3 with two RBI and two runs scored. The sophomore added his second home run in as many days with a solo shot in the second inning. Conrad Gregor put the Commodores on the board in the first driving in Kemp with a double. Kemp finished the night 3-for-3 with three runs scored and three RBI. Harrell now has 21 RBI in the team's first 10 games after driving in 26 all of last year. The grand slam was the third of his career and the home run was his fourth of the season.
While the Dores' offense was racking up runs, four Vandy pitchers were pitching the team's first shutout of the season. Freshman Tyler Ferguson (1-0) was sharp over five innings to earn his first career win. The right-hander scattered three hits and fanned two in the longest outing of his career. Steven Rice followed with two scoreless innings before Keenan Kolinsky and Kyle Smith each tossed one scoreless frame apiece to notch the Commodores' first shutout since last May against Ole Miss. Evansville managed only five hits on the day and had only one base runner reach third base in the ninth inning with two outs.
For the Aces, Jake Mahon had two hits to lead the way. Starter Ryan Billo (0-1) was saddled with the loss giving up four runs on five hits over 4.1 innings.
Vanderbilt's ninth win did not come last year until March 25 against Georgia. The Dores are averaging 9.9 runs per game and have outscored opponents 99-30 through the first 10 games of the season. As a team Vanderbilt is hitting .331 with an on-base percentage of .449 with 10 players hitting .300 or better.
Illinois-Chicago visits Hawkins Field this weekend for a three-game series starting Friday afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for 4 p.m. on Friday with game time on Saturday at 2 p.m. Sunday's game has been moved to a noon start.