Nashville, Tenn. - Evansville scored three runs in the second inning and held off Vanderbilt for a 5-3 win Tuesday night at Hawkins Field.
The Purple Aces (14-7) scored three runs on three hits and two errors in the second inning to grab an early lead. Kevin Kaczmarski's RBI-triple scored the first run of the game before a pair of errors led to two more runs and an early three-run deficit for the Commodores (7-14). Evansville extended the lead to four runs in the fifth when Andy Lasher's sacrifice fly scored Jason Hockemeyer from third on a close play at home plate.
Vanderbilt answered with a run in the sixth inning with a one-out double from Tony Kemp to start a rally. Conrad Gregor singled and Connor Harrell walked to load the bases for Mike Yastrzemski, who knocked in a run with a sacrifice fly for Vandy's lone run in the inning. Evansville tacked on an insurance run in the seventh thanks to the fourth of Vanderbilt's five errors on the day. The Commodores battled back in the eighth when Kemp led off the inning with his second double of the game. Mike Yastrzemski's two-out walk put runners on the corners when Drew Fann was called on to pinch hit. The fifth-year senior delivered with a two-run double into the left-center field gap to pull the Commodores within two runs. Spencer Navin's single to lead off the ninth appeared to start a rally before Evansville closer Josh Biggs closed out the game, retiring the next three batters.
Kemp led Vanderbilt with two hits and two runs with Navin chipping in a pair of singles. Anthony Gomez's 10-game hitting streak came to an end with the shortstop going 0-for-5 from the leadoff spot. Kyle Pollock led the Aces with four hits and two runs scored.
Evansville starter Ryan Billo (3-0) picked up the win working six solid innings. The right-hander gave up one run on five hits with six strikeouts for his third win of the season. Keenan Kolinsky (1-1) was pinned with the loss allowing three runs, two earned, on five hits in his second start. Biggs earned his fourth save working a scoreless ninth inning.
Vanderbilt hosts #17 Georgia this weekend in the Commodores' first Southeastern Conference home series of the season. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. Friday night, 2 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday.