The fans in Knoxville were the heartbeat of Tennessee Baseball’s breakout season in 2021. When the 2021 season began, attendance restrictions were still in place due to COVID guidelines. However, by the end of the season, Tennessee Athletics was hauling out pop-up bleachers to pack as many people as they could into Lindsey Nelson Stadium.
Heck, during the Regional Tournament in Knoxville last summer, a block party was set up adjacent to the stadium just to welcome in more people and more noise.
So now, as the 2022 season-opening weekend comes to a close, it’s safe to say that the Tennessee fans’ excitement didn’t disappear in the off-season.
The Tennessee Baseball fans set multiple attendance records during the Vols’ three-game home stretch this weekend. On Friday afternoon, Tennessee set a new opening-day attendance record at 4,355.
That's the largest season opening attendance in Lindsey Nelson Stadium history. https://t.co/3ZeDAYEA5C
— Rocky Top Insider (@rockytopinsider) February 18, 2022
Then, by the end of the weekend, Tennessee’s fanbase had set a weekend attendance (regular-season and postseason) record at 13,566. On average, the Vols had 4,522 attendees for each game.
Home Run Celebration: Tennessee Baseball Ups the Style with New Home-Run Celebration
The 4,580 attendance today at Lindsey Nelson Stadium pushes the weekend attendance to 13,566, a new LNS record.
— Rocky Top Insider (@rockytopinsider) February 20, 2022
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The Vols look to be on the road to sweeping Georgia Southern in their opening weekend of NCAA baseball.
Tennessee took the opening game of the series on Friday evening by a score of 9-0, and then followed that up with a 10-3 win on Saturday afternoon. Now, at the time of this publication, Tennessee is leading Georgia Southern on Sunday, 10-0, heading into the sixth inning.
The fans in Knoxville that set the record this weekend got to see treat after treat in the form of the home-run ball. Between Friday and Saturday’s games, the Vols sent six long balls over the outfield fence.
On Friday evening, the Vols launched four home runs in back-to-back-to-back-to-back innings: Trey Lipscomb in the 4th inning, Seth Stephenson in the 5th, Jorel Ortega in the 6th, and Christian Scott in the 7th. Then, on Saturday afternoon, Ortega found his second home run of the year in the 8th inning. Just a few batters later in the 8th, Drew Gilbert, the Grand Slam King, launched a grand slam over the right-field fence.
With the weather continuing to warm up and the Vols presumedly getting hotter on the field through the season, the fans will surely continue to show their support in the form of purchased tickets throughout the year, with the opening weekend just being the beginning.