April 8, 2014
Nashville, Tenn. - No. 11 Vanderbilt cruised by Indiana State 6-2 Tuesday night at Hawkins Field behind a strong start from Walker Buehler.
The right-hander dominated to win his sixth game of the season matching career-bests with seven innings and 10 strikeouts. The sophomore waited out a 55-minute rain delay before the game then punched out a pair in the first inning to start his night. Indiana State (21-8) right fielder Jacob Hayes finally got to Buehler in the fourth with a leadoff home run to break up the shutout but Buehler responded by retiring 10 of the next 11 batters he faced. The sophomore ended the fifth with a strikeout and followed up in the sixth by striking out the side then bookended the seventh with strikeouts to end his night. Buehler allowed one run on three hits while recording his second 10-strikeout performance of the season.
The Vanderbilt (26-8) offense scored two in the second inning with a little help from the Sycamores. A walk and an error put two runners aboard in front of John Norwood, who ripped a single to center field for the first run of the game. Karl Ellison followed with a safety squeeze bunt down the first base line to score Nolan Rogers from third and pad the VU lead. The Dores used small ball to add two runs in the fourth. Dansby Swanson led off the inning with a walk, stole second then scored on Bryan Reynolds' bunt single when the catcher's throw to first sailed high. Jason Delay drove in the next run with a safety squeeze bunt of his own to give Vanderbilt all the runs they needed. Vandy tacked on two more runs in the fifth to set the final score.
Swanson stretched his streak of reaching base to all 34 games this season with a first inning double to the right-center field gap. Reynolds and Norwood led the way for the Commodores with two hits apiece with freshman Karl Ellison driving in two runs in his first career start as the designated hitter.
Adam Ravenelle and Brian Miller combined with Buehler to strike out 13 Sycamores on the night to push the team's Southeastern Conference leading total to 311. The Dores' pitching staff has struck out 42 batters over the team's last five games.
Indiana State starter Trent Lunsford took the loss allowing four runs, two earned, on four hits in 2.2 innings of work. Hayes drove in both Indiana State runs and collected two of the squad's five hits.
The Commodores return to SEC action Friday night when Texas A&M makes its first-ever trip to Hawkins Field. Game time for Friday night is set for 6:30 p.m. with Saturday at 2 p.m. and Sunday's finale at 1 p.m.