Tennessee is back in the Super Regionals, advancing past the regional round for a 4th straight year. Now, the Volunteers will host one final series of the season with a shot to reach Omaha.

In that series, Tennessee will face Evansville who is making their first appearance in the Super Regionals after taking down national seed East Carolina. The Aces faced East Carolina 3 times but were able to win twice to become the 9th 4-seed in NCAA Tournament history to win a regional.

To no surprise, Tennessee is the overwhelming favorite to win the series and advance to a second straight College World Series in Omaha. The Vols are -900 to win the Knoxville Super Regional at ESPN Bet, by far the best odds for any team in the round. Fans can track the latest odds for the Vols with SDS’s TN sportsbook apps.

Here is the full schedule for the Knoxville Super Regional and key things to know about Tennessee’s opponent:

Schedule

  • Game 1: Friday, June 7 — 3 pm ET, ESPN2
  • Game 2: Saturday, June 8 — 11 am ET, ESPN2
  • Game 3 (if necessary): Sunday, June 9 — 6 pm ET, ESPNU

Evansville breakdown

Strong offense throughout

Evansville enters the Super Regionals with a potent offense, averaging 7.95 runs per game this season. The Aces have a team OPS of .919 and produced 3 players with double-digit home runs.

The long ball is not the only threat for Evansville. The Aces have 7 players with 13+ doubles and 5 players with 50+ runs.

It was also Evansville’s offense that paved the way in the regional round. The Aces averaged 8.25 runs in the Greenville Regional, including 17 runs scored against VCU.

Pitching will be tested

While Evansville’s offense is strong, the pitching of the Aces has been — ironically — inconsistent throughout the year. Overall, they have a team ERA of 5.95, and the ERA leader (Shane Harris) has thrown 72 innings across 25 appearances (6 starts) with a 3.63 ERA.

Donovan Schultz, a 16-game starter for Evansville, carries a 5.84 ERA. Schultz, along with Kenton Deverman (a 3.81 ERA in 17 appearances/15 starts), has struggled with the long ball with 15 home runs surrendered while Deverman has given up 12.

As a pitching staff, the Aces do not strikeout a lot of batters with Deverman’s 81 in 106.1 innings pitched leading the way. Harris has the best strikeouts per inning of the 3 leaders, but even that number checks in at just 0.94.

In the regional round, Evansville’s pitching allowed 5+ runs in 3 of 4 games and gave up double-digit runs twice, including a 19-run outburst by ECU. Expecting the Aces to suddenly come alive on the mound and shut down the Vols’ lineup is unwise, so the bats will need to keep raking if Evansville wants to make this one a series.

Players to watch

Offensively, Evansville is led by outfielder Max Shallenberger with a 1.247 OPS and .719 slugging percentage. Shallenberger seldom strikes out with 21 on the season while walking 45 times and getting hit by a pitch 26 times to go with 17 home runs, 21 doubles and 71 runs scored.

Shallenberger’s balanced offensive approach is accompanied by infielder Kip Fougerousse who leads the team with 21 home runs. Fougerousse also has 20 doubles but can be a strikeout candidate with 70 on the year.

During the regional round, Fougerousse led the way offensively with 4 home runs and 7 RBI for the Aces while Shallenberger was not far behind. He had a pair of home runs and drove in 6 runs across the 4 games.

Those 2 stars were supported by Brent Widder and Chase Hug during the regionals. Widder delivered 6 RBI while Hug had a home run, 5 runs scored and 3 RBI.

Max Hansmann is one pitcher worth monitoring from Evansville’s staff. After a 6.50 ERA during the regular season, he threw 4 scoreless innings of relief in the deciding game against East Carolina to advance to the Super Regional.