Softball Preview: Midstate Classic vs. Middle Tennessee

Credit: UT Athletics

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — The No. 7 Lady Vols (18-3) head to Columbia, Tenn., to face Middle Tennessee in the sixth annual Midstate Classic on Tuesday, March 12. Tennessee Director of Athletics Phillip Fulmer is scheduled to throw out the first pitch at 7 p.m. ET.

The Orange and White will host an autograph session right after the game for 45 minutes before heading back to Knoxville.

Tennessee is coming off a 2-1 weekend at No. 4 Florida in which it secured its first series against the Gators in Gainesville since 2007. Freshmen Kaili Phillips and Ally Shipman led the Lady Vols, batting .375 each while combining for three home runs and five RBI.

Broadcast Info

Tuesday, March 12

Need to Know

  • Middle Tennessee and UT played in the inaugural Midstate Classic in 2014. UT rallied to win 9-8. The Lady Vols have played three games in Columbia, beating the Blue Raiders, Belmont University in 2016 and the University of Memphis in 2018. A 2017 game with Auburn was canceled because of cold weather and a home run derby was held instead.
  • Tennessee leads the Southeastern Conference with a .357 batting average and the mark ranks fourth in the nation. The Lady Vols’ on-base percentage (0.447) and scoring per game (7.48) are fourth and sixth in the nation, respectively. Senior Aubrey Leach’s batting average of .484 ranks third in the conference and 16th in Division I.
  • In fielding percentage, Tennessee comes in second in both the SEC and nationally with just five errors through 21 games (0.989).
  • In 2019, UT has outscored its opponents 157-38 and hit 26 home runs. Lady Vol newcomers have hit 13 of the long balls.
  • Senior pitcher Matty Moss owns a 10.60 strikeout-to-walk ratio which ranks third in the SEC and fifth in the nation. Her 9.3 strikeouts per seven innings come in at fourth in the conference.

Scouting Report

MIDDLE TENNESSEE

  • Head coach Jeff Breeden is in his eighth year at the helm of Middle Tennessee’s squad. Last season, the Blue Raiders qualified for the NCAA tournament field after finishing 39-22 overall and 11-11 in Conference USA play. The single-season victory total in 2018 was the second-highest in school history, behind only a 41-23 mark in 2001.
  • Through 24 games in 2019, Summer Burgess leads the Blue Raiders with a .354 batting average, 29 hits and a .411 on-base percentage.
  • Amber Baldwin ranks first in the circle for MT, having allowed nine runs on 18 hits through 29.2 innings of work. She boasts a 1.42 ERA and 23 strikeouts in six appearances.

All-Time Record vs. Middle Tennessee: 19-1

  • In Knoxville: UT leads, 9-0
  • In Murfreesboro: UT leads, 7-1
  • At Neutral Sites: UT leads, 3-0
  • Last Meeting: UT won, 4-0 in Statesboro, Ga., on 2/10/17

Past Five Meetings (UT leads, 5-0)

  • Date          Result                                 Location
  • 2/10/17      #15 UT 4, MT 0                  Statesboro, Ga.
  • 3/18/14      #4 UT 9, MT 8                    Columbia, Tenn.
  • 3/4/12        #9 UT 6, MT 3                    Knoxville
  • 3/31/10      #16 UT 9, MT 1 (5)             Knoxville
  • 3/18/09      #6 UT 6, MT 5                    Knoxville

 

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