When Belmont and Vanderbilt played twice during the NCAA regionals last May, the College World Series-bound Commodores made quick work of the Bruins.
At the teams’ rematch at Rose Park Tuesday, however, it was a different story.
In the Bruin’s 60th game against the Commodores, it took a grand slam by William Dodd in the fourth inning to give the lead that led to the 6-5 Belmont win.
“It was good, a good team bat… [it] put us in a position that mattered,” said Dodd, a sophomore.
This was Belmont’s first win against Vanderbilt since 2009.
“It’s a good win against a quality opponent. An SEC win is always good for the kids’ development, confidence and good for the program,” said head coach Dave Jarvis.
Prior to the grand slam, Dodd’s first career home run, the game was neck and neck between the two teams.
Drew Turner hit a triple in the bottom of second and was knocked in by a Dodd bunt to take the lead at 2-1.
Vanderbilt answered back in the third with two back-to-back scores. Designated hitter Conrad Gregor batted in Spencer Navin and put shortstop Anthony Gomez within scoring range. A Mike Yastrzemski hit gave the Commodores a 3-2 lead.
The turning point in the game came with the Dodd grand slam that gave the Bruins a 6-3 lead.
“He [Dodd] has tremendous potential, we’ve been hoping that he could get going and well, I’d say he got going today,” Jarvis said.
Dodd’s slam was the first home run that 2011 MLB first round draft pick Tyler Beede has given up during his college career.
From then, offense lagged for both teams until the top of ninth when Vanderbilt outfielder Tony Kemp batted two runs in with a single to right field.
Led by Derek Fanchier, the Bruins held on to get the final out of the game and the win.
The Bruins now hold a 7-5 overall record, and will play future OVC rival Murray State tomorrow at Rose Park and will play a weekend series at Auburn starting Fri., March 9.