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Kentucky baseball: Weekend update (March 4)

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Overall Record: 10-1
Record Last Week: 5-0

Recent Results

Tuesday, Feb. 26 - defeated Murray State, 11-5
Wednesday, Feb. 27 - defeated Eastern Kentucky, 6-2
Friday, March 1 - defeated Akron, 21-2
Saturday, March 2 - defeated Akron, 7-0
Sunday, March 3 - defeated Akron 9-2

Upcoming Schedule (times Eastern)
Tuesday, March 5 - vs. Cincinnati - 4 p.m.
Wednesday, March 6 - vs. Xavier - 4 p.m.
Friday, March 8 - vs. Michigan State - 4 p.m.
Saturday, March 9 - vs. Michigan State - 2 p.m.
Sunday, March 10 - vs. Michigan State - 1 p.m.

PLAYER OF THE WEEK NOMINEE
A.J. Reed
6-4 - So. - LHP/1B - Terre Haute, Ind. (Terre Haute South)
Week Stats: .526 (10-for-19), 6 R, 2B, 3 HR, 15 RBI, 20 TB, 1.053 SLG%, .609 OB%, BB, 3 HBP, 1 SO

Notes: Sophomore two-way star A.J. Reed had a historic week for the Wildcats, leading UK to five wins to extend its winning streak to seven games ... Drove in 15 RBI during the week, belting three homers and adding a double ... Hit .526 (10-for-19) during the week, with a 1.053 slugging and a .609 on-base percentage ... In UK's home opening win over Murray State, belted a three-run, first-inning homer to give UK an early lead, finishing with four RBI and a pair of hit by pitches ... On Wednesday, scored a run and collected a hit, before exploding in the series opener vs. Akron ... Went 4-for-5 in the opener vs. the Zips, with five RBI and his second homer of the week ... Also started the opener vs. Akron on the mound, tossing six innings and allowing only two runs on six hits and two walks, striking out four ... In the series-clincher on Saturday, belted a homer - his second consecutive game with a bomb - going 3-for-4 with three RBI and a walk ... In the sweep clincher on Sunday, Reed ripped a double off the centerfield wall to clear the bases, giving him three more RBI in a 1-for-3 game ... On the year, Reed leads UK with 22 RBI on four homers, a double and a triple, batting .409 (18-for-44) with 11 runs scored ... On the mound, as UK's Friday-night starter, Reed has a 2-1 record ... A preseason All-America honoree, Reed has hit .320 (78-for-244) in his two-year UK career with eight homers and 65 RBI, posting a 7-4 record with a 3.00 ERA on the mound.

PITCHER OF THE WEEK NOMINEE
Jerad Grundy

6-1 - Sr. - LHP - Johnsburg, Ill. (Heartland/Miami, Fla.)
Week Stats: 1-0, 1 GS, 8 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 12 SO, .077 B/avg.

Notes: Senior southpaw Jerad Grundy had the best start of his career in a win over Akron on Saturday ... Worked eight shutout, two-hit innings, not allowing a walk and striking out a career-best 12 ... Became the first UK pitcher to strike out 12 hitters since Alex Meyer fanned 13 in a start vs. Niagara in 2011 ... He allowed only a pair of singles with no base runners advancing past first base ... He retired the first eight hitters he faced before an infield single, including seven by strikeout ... Rated as the seventh-best senior in college baseball by Baseball America in the preseason, he retired 13 consecutive after allowing a third-inning single ... Tossed only 86 pitches, including a staggering 68 for strikes ... Through his first three starts of 2013, has a 3-0 record and a 0.43 ERA, allowing only one earned run in 21 innings, striking out 24 and holding opponents to a .125 average ... In his two-year UK career, has a 9-3 record and a 3.12 ERA in 19 starts, tossing 106.2 innings and striking out 87.

FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK NOMINEE
Greg Fettes

6-2 * Fr. * C * Madison Heights, Mich. (Lamphere)
Week Stats: .667 (4-for-6), 2B, 3 RBI, .833 SLG%, SF

Notes: Freshman catcher Greg Fettes made a pair of starts during the week behind the plate, batting 4-for-6 with a double and three RBI ... In his first career home start in the 2013 home opener, Fettes collected a single and a sacrifice fly ... Earned his third career start vs. Akron on Saturday, catching a dynamic pitching outing from Jerad Grundy, with the senior southpaw tossing eight shutout, two-hit innings with Fettes behind the dish ... Went a career-high 3-for-4 with two RBI and a double in the win over Akron ... On the year, Fettes - a 43rd round pick of the Detroit Tigers out of high school - has hit .750 (6-for-8) with two doubles and three RBI.

TEAM NOTES
The eighth-ranked Kentucky baseball team completed its first home week with five wins, including a series sweep over Akron during the weekend. UK picked up midweek wins over Murray State and Eastern Kentucky and will host five more games at Cliff Hagan Stadium this week, welcoming Cincinnati and Xavier for midweek matchups and hosting Michigan State in a three-game weekend series.

Kentucky (10-1) extended its winning streak to seven with the five wins during the week, despite battling weather conditions throughout the week. The Wildcats opened the home schedule with an 11-5 win over Murray State on Tuesday and got a 6-2 win over Eastern Kentucky on Wednesday. UK then pounded Akron, 21-2 in the home opener, clinched the series with a 7-0 win on Saturday and swept the Zips with a 9-2 win on Sunday.

The Wildcats have batted .324 as a team through 11 games, with seven homers and 113 runs scored, stealing 23 bases. Defensively, UK - riding a three-game stretch without an error and a two-game stretch without a walk - has fielded .974 with seven double plays. On the mound, UK had a 2.57 ERA in 98 innings, walking only 27 and striking out 87, with opponents hitting .255, stealing only 3-of-7 bases and UKL picking off four runners.

UK has been led individually by junior infielder J.T. Riddle, who has hit .447 (21-for-47) with three doubles, one triple, one homer and 11 RBI, stealing three bases and reaching base at a .527 clip. Two-way star A.J. Reed has hit .409 (18-for-44) with a double, triple and four homers, driving in 22 RBI and spotting a .750 slugging mark. Catcher Micheal Thomas has hit .400 (10-for-25) with nine runs and eight RBI, while Max Kuhn has a .33 average (13-for-39) with two doubles, one triple and 12 RBI, stealing five bags. All-America centerfielder Austin Cousino has batted .311 (14-for-45) with three doubles, two homers and 10 RBI, stealing five bags. Shortstop Matt Reida has hit .289 (11-for-38) with a double and five RBI, while Paul McConkey has hit .280 (7-for-25) with two doubles and a triple. Zac Zellers has hit .263 (10-for-38) with a double and five RBI, while Lucas Witt has added a .250 average (9-for-36) with 10 runs and 10 RBI, stealing four bags.

On the mound, UK's weekend rotation of Reed (2-1, 4.70 ERA) on Friday, senior southpaw Jerad Grundy (3-0, 0.43 ERA) and junior lefty Corey Littrell (1-0, 4.32 ERA) have been solid, with Grundy coming off a 12-strikeout performance on Saturday. UK has used freshman Zach Strecker (0-0, 3.38 ERA) a team-high five times, with junior right-hander Trevor Gott (2-0, 0.00 ERA) saving a game in his four relief outings, striking out eight in 5.1 frames. Sophomore right-hander Chandler Shepherd (1-0, 2.45 ERA) has worked in four games in relief, tossing 11 innings with 10 strikeouts. Dylan Dwyer (0-0, 0.00 ERA) and Walter Wijas (1-0, 0.00 ERA) have each worked in four games in relief.

During the five-game week, UK got a jaw-dropping hitting performance from Reed, who drove in 15 RBI with three homers and a double during the week, batting .526 (10-for-19). UK hit .337 during the week and fielding .974, posting a 1.40 ERA on the mound.

Video: Highlights from Sunday's sweep-clinching win


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