by Knox Bardeenknoxbardeen@csssports.com
The Tennessee Volunteers (23-25, 5-20 SEC) will play theLouisiana State University Tigers (31-19, 9-16 SEC) on Saturday in Game 2 oftheir weekend series at Alex Box Stadium in Baton Rouge, La. The game will bebroadcast on CSS at 4 p.m.LSU won Game 1 on Friday on the back of starting pitcherKevin Gausman, who threw complete game, four-hit shutout. Starting on Saturday for LSU will be freshman Kurt McCune.The right-hander is 6-3 this season with a 3.51 ERA and ranks seventh in theSoutheastern Conference with a .22 opponent batting average. McCunes laststart was against Western Division leading Alabama where he was touched up bythe Crimson Tide for four earned runs and 10 hits in seven innings.Tennessee will counter with sophomore Nick Blount. The right-handeris 1-3 with a 5.79 ERA this season and is coming off a one inning reliefappearance on Thursday where he gave up one hit and allowed zero runs. Blountslast start was last Saturday against Mississippi State. Blount gave up six hitsand four earned runs in four innings of work and took the loss.The Volunteers have been mathematically eliminated frompost-season play, but LSU, even at 9-16 is only four games out of first placein the Western Division with five games to play.Prior to Saturdays first pitch, LSU will honor CollegeBaseball Hall of Famer Eddy Furniss, who played first base for the Tigers from1995-1998. LSU second baseman JaCoby Jones has been on atorrid stretch of late. In his last 10 games hes batting .457 (16-for-35) withsix runs scored and four runs batted in.Tiger starting pitcher Kurt McCune hasnt beenas sharp recently as he was in the beginning of the season. In his first eightstarts, McCune gave up a total of 11 earned runs. In his last four starts hesgiven up 19 earned runs. Over those last four games, McCunes ERA has balloonedfrom 1.80 to 3.51.LSU leads the all-time series with Tennessee,48-21. Their most recent matchup, before Fridays win, was last season when theTigers swept the Volunteers in Knoxville.Volunteer senior Josh Liles went 2-for-3 onFriday and now needs just five hits to become a member of the 200-hit club atthe University of Tennessee. Youll know if the Volunteers are going to winby the seventh inning. When Tennessee leads after six innings, it is 22-1. Whenthe team trails after six, it is 0-22.Even though Tennessee is close to LSU in number ofhits this season (433 for the Vols, compared to 466 for LSU), the Volunteershave scored 85 fewer runs.