Hoover, Ala. -
Vanderbilt opened the Southeastern Conference Tournament with a 10-0 run-rule win over Georgia Wednesday night at Regions Park.
A trio of freshmen led the fourth-ranked Commodores with pitchers T.J. Pecoraro and Kevin Ziomek teaming up with SEC Freshman of the Year Tony Kemp. Pecoraro and Ziomek combined for a one-hit shutout with Ziomek earning the victory. The lefty entered the game in the fourth inning after Pecoraro exited with a right forearm strain. Ziomek walked the first batter he faced to load the bases but struck out the next two Bulldogs to end the threat. He earned his third win of the year working 3.2 no-hit innings and fanning three.
The Vanderbilt offense started early scoring three runs in the second inning with help from two Georgia errors. Jason Esposito led off the inning with a solo home run and Tony Kemp singled in a run and later scored to make it 3-0 Dores after two innings. Esposito's RBI-single in the fifth extended the lead before the Commodores' tacked on two more runs in the sixth and ended the game with four runs in the seventh. Anthony Gomez's single to right field scored Kemp, who had tripled, to end the game.
Kemp led all players scoring three runs, driving in three runs and going 3-for-5 with two stolen bases. Esposito added three hits, two RBI and two runs scored in the victory. Aaron Westlake and Curt Casali each went 2-for-4. Joey Delmonico had the Bulldogs' lone hit in the third inning with a single up the middle.
Georgia starter Michael Palazzone took the loss giving up six runs, four earned, on 11 hits over six innings. The Bulldogs' bullpen was roughed up for four runs on three hits while recording just two outs.
The Commodores advance to play top-ranked South Carolina tomorrow night in the last game of the day at Regions Park. Sonny Gray gets the nod for Vanderbilt against Gamecocks' freshman right-hander Forrest Koumas.
Registration is now open for Summer 2011 Baseball Camps. Please click here to sign up or to find out additional information about the camps led by Head Coach Tim Corbin.