VAUGHT THROWS FIRST NO-HITTER IN SCHOOL HISTORY
KISSIMMEE, Florida-Amanda Vaught opened the day for Tennessee State in a dominating fashion. The junior pitcher threw the first no-hitter in school history in a 3-0 win over La Salle. The Tigers completed the second day of the Rebel Spring Games with a 5-3 win over Maine. With the wins TSU improved to 15-3 on the season. Maine drops to 7-4 and La Salle falls to 0-1. Vaught worked all seven innings and commanded the strike zone fanning 17 batters, tying her career high. The Murfreesboro native did get a little help from senior Diana Clifford in the fourth inning. La Salle catcher Michelle Sullivan drove a two out, 1-2 pitch, to deep left center in which Clifford raced to get. The centerfielder would leave her feet diving towards the fence to rob Sullivan of extra bases and kept the no-hitter alive. Vaught (7-0) would hit the second batter of the game to eliminate any chance of a perfect game and would later walk two Explorers. Seven Tigers recorded a hit including a double by junior Jennifer Gregory and a triple by freshman Bridget Metzger. Clifford would give Vaught all she needed with an RBI single in the first to score Tamara Perkins and put the Tigers up 1-0. Candace Hildebrand would add a two-run single to give TSU a 3-0 lead in the fifth inning. In the second game, Maine jumped out early with a run off Hildebrand in the second inning. The Tigers would respond in the third and tie the game at 1-1 when Erin Finneran singled up the middle to allow Tamara Perkins to score from second base. In the sixth inning, TSU took advantage of a Black Bears error when centerfielder Tara Vilardo over-ran a ball off the bat of Metzger. Finneran would score from second followed closely by Clifford to increase the score to 4-1. Two batters later Katie Anderson would hit a two-run home run over the left field fence, which would prove to be the game winner as Maine responded with two runs in the bottom of the sixth to make the score 5-3. The dinger was the first for Anderson as a Tiger. Hildebrand improved to 7-3 as she scattered five hits and three walks, while striking out five. Vaught pitched the seventh inning striking out two on her way to her second save on the year. Hildebrand was 2-for-4 with a double against Maine to extend her hit streak to eleven games. She has hit safely in 17 of the 18 games TSU has played this season. The Tigers will continue the ten-game road trip on Wednesday, March 7, as they take on South Dakota State at 1 p.m. and Sacred Heart at 3 p.m.