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LIVE Updates, Score, Notes: No. 1 Tennessee Baseball vs. No. 8 Florida State College World Series Opener

Photo By Emma Corona/Tennessee Athletics

SCORE: Tennessee 12, Florida State 11 | FINAL


Top-ranked Tennessee baseball (55-12, 22-8 SEC) is set to battle No. 8 seed Florida State Seminoles (47-15, 17-12 ACC) Friday night in Omaha, Nebraska in the College World Series.

First pitch in Charles Schwab Field is set for 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.

If the Vols lose to Florida State, they will play Virginia on Monday at 2 p.m. ET (1 CT) in an elimination game. If Tennessee wins, the Big Orange will face off against UNC on Sunday at 7 p.m. ET (6 CT).

Tennessee is the No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament for the second time in three years. The Vols swept through the Knoxville Regional and won two of three games against Evansville in the Knoxville Super Regional.

Florida State is the No. 8 seed in the NCAA Tournament. The Seminoles haven’t lost a game since the ACC Tournament Championship against Duke. The Noles swept their Regional, beating Stetson once and UCF twice, before sweeping UConn 2-0 in the Tallahassee Super.

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Tennessee entered the NCAA Tournament matchup coming off an SEC Tournament championship victory to achieve its second tournament title in three years.

While Florida State lost in the ACC Tournament championship game, the Noles posted an impressive 17-12 conference record in an incredibly difficult league. Highlights of Florida State’s season include series wins over Duke and fellow Omaha team NC State along with a midweek win over another Omaha team, Florida.

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TRANSCRIPT: Everything Tennessee HC Tony Vitello Said Before College World Series Opener

For all of RTI’s baseball coverage so far this season, including the RTI staff’s prediction for Tennessee vs. FSU, click here.

For the latest RTI Press Pass baseball podcast, click here.

More From RTI: Tennessee Baseball vs. Florida State In College World Series: How To Watch, Complete Preview
VIDEO: WATCH: Tennessee, Florida State Media Day Press Conferences at the College World Series
Injury Note

Sophomore RHP AJ Russell is shut down for the remainder of the season and thus is inactive for the College World Series. Russell underwent Tommy John surgery on Tuesday to repair his UCL. However, Russell is with the team in Omaha.

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Tennessee is the betting favorite to win the College World Series, and rightfully so, as the Vols have been the best team all year. However, it is difficult for any team to climb out of the loser’s bracket, making the first game vastly significant.

The Vols have not won their first game in Omaha in the Tony Vitello era, losing to Virginia in 2021 and LSU in 2023.

Lineups, pitching matchup and additional pre-game notes are below, followed by the LIVE at-bat by at-bat game thread.

Starting Lineups


2B Christian Moore (R)

1B Blake Burke (L)

3B Billy Amick (R)

LF Dylan Dreiling (L)

CF Hunter Ensley (R)

RF Kavares Tears (L)

SS Dean Curley (R)

DH Dalton Bargo (L)

C Cal Stark (R)

Lineup Notes:
  • Dalton Bargo gets the DH nod to open Tennessee’s run in Omaha after hitting two home runs in the Vols’ Super Regional finale against Evansville.
  • Other 8 starters the same as it’s been.


CF Max Williams (L)

3B Cam Smith (R)

RF James Tibbs III (L)

DH Marco Dinges (R)

LF Jaime Ferrer (R)

1B Daniel Cantu (L)

SS Alex Lodise (R)

2B Drew Faurot (S)

C Jaxson West (L)

Pitching Matchup:

Vols Gr-Sr LHP Chris Stamos (3-0, 4.02 ERA, 20 app., 9 starts, 31.1 IP, 21 H, 14 R, 14 ER, 15 BB, 35 K, 12 XBH, .193 opp. batting avg., 1.15 WHIP)


Seminoles So. LHP Jamie Arnold (11-3, 2.77 ERA, 18 app., 17 starts, 1 SV, 100.2 IP, 82 H, 39 R, 31 ER, 22 BB, 155 K, 27 XBH, .216 opp. batting avg., 1.03 WHIP)

Pitching notes:
  • Stamos continues to start in a game one setting. He will open the game before giving way to RHP AJ Causey.
  • Arnold is FSU’s ace and one of the better pitchers in the College World Series. The Vols will look to work his pinch count up quickly and get to FSU’s bullpen.

Tennessee: Icy Whites

Florida State: Maroon on maroon


  • There is NO Run-Rule in NCAA Tournament play.
  • Tennessee is the HOME team.


1st Inning: 


-Max Williams legs out an infield single to 2B.

  • Burke jumped on a ground ball to second that was CMo’s to field. Left the base open and Stamos couldn’t get there in time. Bad defensive mistake to start things off.

-Cam Smith issued a four-pitch walk.

-James Tibbs III reaches on a fielder’s choice to 1B as Smith is out at second, 3-6. Williams advances to third.

*Pitching change: Jr. RHP AJ Causey (13-3, 3.77 ERA) on to pitch for Stamos*

-Marco Dinges strikes out swinging on three pitches.

James Tibbs III steals second.

-Jaime Ferrer is walked.

Williams scores on a wild pitch. Tibbs III advances to third on a wild pitch. Wild pitch was ball four for Ferrer.

-Daniel Cantu is walked on four pitches. Ferrer advances to second.

  • Bases loaded with two outs for Alex Lodise.

-Alex Lodise strikes out swinging to strand the bases loaded.

  • Huge K from Causey.



-Christian Moore smokes a leadoff triple to right center.

  • 110 mph exit velo.

-Blake Burke bloops an RBI single into left field.

  • Left-fielder couldn’t find it in time and it drops in shallow left. Moore scores easily.

-Billy Amick works a walk.

-Dylan Dreiling smacks an RBI single into centerfield. Amick advances to second.

-Hunter Ensley grounds into a 4-6-3 double play. Amick advances to third.

-Kavares Tears grounds out to 3B.


Score: Vols 2, Seminoles 1

2nd Inning: 


-Drew Faurot strikes out swinging.

-Jaxson West reaches on a throwing error by Christian Moore, advances to second on the error.

  • Throw was far too wide. Moore rushed the throw. Had time to take another step but rushed it.

-Max Williams ropes a single through the right side. West advances to third.

  • West SHOULD have scored as Tears booted the ball in right, but West missed the bag when rounding third and had to go back. Vols catch a break there on a bad mistake by West.

-Cam Smith grounds into a 1-4-3 double play.

  • West’s mistake even bigger now. Vols catch a break after committing some bad defensive mistakes of their own.



-Dean Curley strikes out swinging.

-Dalton Bargo strikes out swinging.

-Cal Stark works a walk.

  • Stark is so good at flipping the lineup with two outs. Does it again here.

-Christian Moore smokes double down the LF line. Moore advances to third on a fielding error by C. Stark scores on the fielding error by C.

  • Throw was on time at home plate but Stark’s slide knocked it out of West’s glove. His knee hit it out, as West didn’t have proper technique when trying to lay the tag. Stark is safe for an unearned run.

-Blake Burke reaches on a throwing error by P. Moore scores on the throwing error.

  • Arnold’s throw took the first baseman off the bag, allowing Burke to reach and Moore to score.

Burke steals second.

-Billy Amick flies out to LF.


Score: Vols 4, Seminoles 1

3rd Inning: 


-James Tibbs III slaps a single to CF.

-Marco Dinges knocks a single up the middle, advances to second on the throw to third. Tibbs III safe at third.

  • Looked like Ensley hesitated on what he was going to do. Allowed Tibbs III to reach third.

-Jaime Ferrer rips a two-run double to right-center.

-Daniel Cantu singles to RF. Ferrer advances to third.

-Alex Lodise HBP on a 3-0 count.

  • Bases loaded with no outs for Drew Faurot. Five straight have reached as things are unraveling for AJ Causey.

*Pitching change: Sr. LHP Kirby Connell (4-1, 3.98 ERA) on to pitch for AJ Causey*

-Drew Faurot strikes out swinging.

-Jaxson West works a bases-loaded walk.

-Max Williams reaches on an RBI fielder’s choice to 2B to score Cantu. West is out at second, 4-6. Williams safe at first as Burke commits a fielding error on what should have been a double play to end the inning and prevent any runs from scoring. Lodise scores on Burke’s fielding error.

  • Curley’s throw was good enough to execute the double play, but it ricocheted off of Burke’s glove.

-Cam Smith ropes an RBI triple to LF to score Williams.

  • Surprised it wasn’t ruled an error on Dylan Dreiling as he booted the ball in deep left. Williams scored easily because of it.

-James Tibbs III strikes out swinging.



-Dylan Dreiling sends a single to SS.

  • Hard-hit ball wasn’t corralled by the SS allowing Dreiling to leg it out.

-Hunter Ensley strikes out swinging.

-Kavares Tears grounds into a 1-6-3 double play.


Score: Vols 4, Seminoles 7

4th Inning: 


*Pitching change: So. RHP Aaron Combs (2-1, 2.65 ERA) on to pitch for Connell*

-Marco Dinges is walked on four pitches.

-Jaime Ferrer launches a two-run homer to LF.

-Daniel Cantu strikes out swinging.

-Alex Lodise flies out to RF.

-Drew Faurot delivers a single through the left side.

-Jaxson West grounds out to 2B.



-Dean Curley grounds out to 3B.

-Dalton Bargo HBP.

-Christian Moore singles to RF. Bargo advances to second.

  • Moore is a HR away from the cycle.

-Blake Burke works a walk.

  • Bases loaded with two outs for Billy Amick.

-Billy Amick flies out to CF to strand the bases loaded.


Score: Vols 4, Seminoles 9

5th Inning: 


-Max Williams grounds out to 2B.

-Cam Smith strikes out swinging.

-James Tibbs III strikes out looking on three pitches.

  • By far the best top half from the Tennessee defense. Aaron Combs looked like Aaron Combs.



-Dylan Dreiling strikes out swinging.

-Hunter Ensley singles to right-center.

-Kavares Tears cranks a two-run homer to RF.

  • 19th HR for Tears this season and first of the game for UT.
  • 113 mph, 395 ft.

-Dean Curley works a walk.

-Dalton Bargo flies out to CF.

-Cal Stark flies out to CF.


Score: Vols 6, Seminoles 9

6th Inning: 


-Marco Dinges slaps a single up the middle.

-Jaime Ferrer fouls out to RF.

  • Nice job by KT to run under it.

-Daniel Cantu flies out to deep CF.

  • 108 mph. Was smoked but got caught up.

-Alex Lodise rips a double down the LF line. Dinges advances to third.

-Drew Faurot grounds out to 3B.

  • Great job by Burke. Billy’s throw was wide but Burke was able to lean over and nab it. Saved at least one run.



*Pitching change: RHP Conner Whittaker (5-0, 4.75 ERA) on to pitch for Arnold*

  • Tennessee scored more earned runs and worked more walks than any opponent against Jamie Arnold this year.

-Christian Moore smokes a leadoff solo home run to CF.

  • 117 mph, 440 feet.
  • Moore has HIT FOR THE CYCLE now with a single, 2B, 3B and a HR.

-Blake Burke grounds out to 1B unassisted.

-Billy Amick flies out to LF.

-Dylan Dreiling grounds out to 2B.


Score: Vols 7, Seminoles 9

7th Inning: 


-Jaxson West works a walk.

-Max Williams strikes out swinging on three pitches.

-Cam Smith is walked.

*Pitching change: So. LHP Andrew Behnke (3-1, 3.12 ERA) on to pitch for Combs*

-James Tibbs III strikes out swinging.

Runners steal second and third.

-Marco Dinges drive a two-run double to left-center.

*Pitching change: So. RHP Nate Snead (9-2, 3.34 ERA) on to pitch for Behnke*

-Jaime Ferrer grounds out to P.



-Hunter Ensley strikes out swinging.

-Kavares Tears strikes out swinging.

-Dean Curley singles to 3B.

-Dalton Bargo strikes out swinging.


Score: Vols 7, Seminoles 11

8th Inning: 


-Daniel Cantu fouls out to 3B.

-Alex Lodise singles through the left side.

-Drew Faurot strikes out swinging.

Lodise steals second.

-Jaxson West works a walk to flip the lineup.

-Max Williams out at first 1B to P.

  • Nice nab by Snead as the toss from Burke was not the best.



-Cal Stark strikes out looking on three pitches.

-Christian Moore fouls out to 1B.

-Blake Burke cracks a single through the right side.

-Billy Amick chops a single to 3B. Burke advances to second.

-Dylan Dreiling knocks an RBI single to LF to score Burke. Amick advances to second.

-Hunter Ensley grounds out to P.


Score: Vols 8, Seminoles 11

9th Inning: 


-Cam Smith works a walk after a long battle.

-James Tibbs III strikes out swinging.

-Marco Dinges fouls out to 1B.

Smith advances to second on a balk.

  • Tony Vitello is OUTRAGED at the call.

-Jaime Ferrer flies out to deep right field.



*Max Williams to LF*

*DeAmez Ross to CF for Jaime Ferrer*

-Kavares Tears smokes a leadoff triple off the centerfield wall.

-Dean Curley sends a sac fly to the warning track in RF.

*Pitching change: LHP Brennen Oxford (2-0, 2.94 ERA) on to pitch for Whittaker*

*Cannon Peebles pinch-hitting for Dalton Bargo*

-Cannon Peebles works a walk.

  • Another great AB from Cannon in a big spot. CMo will hit barring a double play.

-Cal Stark fouls out to 3B.

Peebles advances to second on a wild pitch.

-Christian Moore smacks a double down the LF line. Peebles advances to third.

  • Winning run at the plate in Blake Burke.

-Blake Burke sends a two-run single up the middle to tie the game.

  • Christian Moore and Blake Burke. What a pair of clutch hits to tie this thing up. What a rally.

-Billy Amick smacks a single to LF. Burke advances to second.

*Pitching change: LHP Connor Hults (2-1, 4.45 ERA) on to pitch for Oxford*

-Dylan Dreiling WALKS IT OFF with a basehit to left-center.

  • WHAT. A. GAME.


Score: Vols 12, Seminoles 11


FINAL: Tennessee Vols 12, Florida State Seminoles 11

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