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Five takeaways from Tennessee’s historic victory over Florida State

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We knew the rematch was a possibility. After stunning Florida State last Friday with a comeback win to end all comeback wins, Tennessee found themselves facing the Seminoles once again. This time, a Vols’ win would catapult them to the MCWS finals – a victory that would also solidify the 2024 Tennessee baseball team as the winningest in Volunteer history. Tennessee did just that, sending the Seminoles back to Tallahassee on Wednesday by a score of 7-2. Here are five takeaways from this monumental achievement. 

Get them on, get them home

Tennessee is batting over .400 with RISP this postseason. They wasted no time putting runs up on the board as three Vols crossed home plate in the top of the 1st, chasing Seminole starter John Abraham to an extremely early exit. 

Tennessee, 2 – Centerfield Wall, 0 

Normally positioned in right, Kavares Tears shifted over to centerfield in place of Hunter Ensley. Ensley was Wednesday’s designated hitter after he made an amazing wall-crashing catch Sunday. Tears had his own Spiderman moment in the bottom of the 1st, recording a wall-smacking grab, saving what would have most likely been extra bases for FSU’s Marco Dinges. 

The infield can play defense too 

In the bottom of the 3rd, starting pitcher Zander Sechrist got into a jam with runners on 2nd and 3rd and no outs. Astonishingly, the Vols were able to escape unharmed due to some fancy defensive work. Shortstop Dean Curley threw out a runner at the plate and the Vols’ infield followed with a 3-6 double play to get out of the inning.  

Small ball wins games

We were warned that home runs would be harder to come by at Charles Schwab Field. No problem for Christian Moore and crew. After hitting for the cycle Friday night, Moore racked up a single and triple (scoring Cal Stark) on Wednesday. They may lead all of college baseball in home runs, but Tennessee was able to get the win with only hitting one ball over the fence (8th inning solo shot by Blake Burke). 

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The history books will remember 2024

Tennessee has earned a spot in its second College World Series final, the last time being 73 years ago in 1951. With Wednesday’s win, the Vols are 58-12, surpassing 2022’s 57 victories and moving them into 1st place in program history. The Vols currently have hit 178 home runs this season, giving them a chance to break what some thought was an unattainable record, LSU’s mark of 188, set in 1997.    

Next up – Tennessee awaits the winner of Wednesday night’s matchup between Florida and Texas A&M to determine their finals’ opponent. Florida will be playing their second game of the day, after walloping Kentucky 15-4 earlier in the day.

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