Vols humiliate reigning national champions 27-2

Obviously Tennessee has chosen not to ease up during the rest of its regular season.

College baseball's top-ranked team followed up Tuesday night's 18-0 thrashing of visiting Belmont by blistering Mississippi State 27-2 in Thursday night's series opener in Starkville. The famed Dudy Noble Field was a morgue from the start, as Luc Lipcius, Jordan Beck and Drew Gilbert connected on home runs in consecutive at-bats during the first inning for an instant 3-0 lead.

By the time the Volunteers collected their fourth homer of the night, a three-run shot by Blake Burke in the third, they essentially had things wrapped at 8-0. They would finish with seven, tying a school record.

Tennessee starting pitcher Chase Dollander worked six scoreless and hitless innings, retiring 18 of the 19 batters he faced. His chances of pitching deeper were done in by Tennessee's seven-run seventh inning that consumed 40 minutes.

Jorel Ortega continued Tennessee's homer onslaught with a three-run blast in the sixth that made it 14-0 - Ortega finished with five hits and eight RBIs - and Lipcius went deep again in the seventh for a two-run shot that upped the lead to 16-0.

The Vols, who improved to 47-7 overall and to 23-5 in Southeastern Conference play, will finish their regular season Friday night and Saturday afternoon before turning their focus to next week's league tournament in Hoover, Alabama. The Bulldogs fell to 26-28 and 9-19 and may be down to their final two games.

Contact David Paschall at dpaschall@timesfreepress.com. Follow him on Twitter @DavidSPaschall.