Editor’s Note: The following is an official press release courtesy of LSU’s athletics department.
BATON ROUGE, La. – No. 10/12 LSU (23-3) fell to No. 4/5 Tennessee (22-1) 5-0 Friday night at Tiger Park to open the three-game series.
“I didn’t like our approach,” said Head Coach Beth Torina. “I think we need to fight harder not just at the plate, but all over the field. That was one of the worst efforts of the year as far as our mentality goes, so I think tomorrow we will do better.”
Graduate pitcher Ali Kilponen (8-1) threw her eighth complete game of the season. Kilponen struck out seven batters and gave up six hits, four earned runs and seven walks in the loss.
The Tigers’ offense was held to two hits on the night. Junior outfielder Ali Newland recorded one hit, and graduate infielder Karli Petty tallied the second hit and lone extra-base hit for the home team.
Tennessee’s pitcher Ashley Rogers (8-0) fanned nine batters and handed out three walks to go along with the two hits in the complete game effort.
Kilponen started the night by retiring six of the game’s first seven batters that included four strikeouts. After two scoreless innings however, UT’s sophomore outfielder Katie Taylor hit a two-run homer to start the scoring and ended the inning with a 4-0 lead.
The Tigers threatened in the fifth inning with Petty’s leadoff double, but two runners were left on base to end the frame. The Lady Vols went on to add another run in the top of the seventh and the Tigers went out in order in the final half inning to fall, 5-0.
LSU will play game two of the series against Tennessee at 5 p.m. Saturday.
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