Cheek’s Late-Inning Bomb Powers Kentucky to 2-1 Win over EKU
LEXINGTON, Ky. – Freshman Abbey Cheek’s two-run home run in the bottom of the sixth was enough to power the No. 12 Kentucky softball team past Eastern Kentucky, 2-1 on Staff Appreciation Night at John Cropp Stadium on Wednesday night.
Cheek stepped to the plate with one out and a runner on first, trailing the Colonels by a run in the bottom of the sixth inning and deposited her sixth bomb of the season over the wall in right center to score two and put the Wildcats ahead for the rest of the game.
Kentucky moves to 35-8 overall on the season with Wednesday night’s win over EKU and remains at 11-4 in Southeastern Conference play. EKU drops just its ninth game of the season to fall to 27-9 on the season and remain 11-2 in Ohio Valley Conference action, where they sit second in the league.
Junior Meagan Prince picked up her team-leading 16th win of the season on Wednesday, throwing three full innings of scoreless action, only allowing one hit to the 10 batters she faced. Prince is now 16-2 on the year and sports a 1.81 ERA in the circle for Kentucky. Junior Shannon Smith started the game for UK, earning a no decision on four innings pitched. Smith allowed just one run on a home run, the only hit she allowed all game long while striking out seven of the 16 batters that she faced.
Kentucky picks up with SEC play on Friday as UK welcomes in the Missouri Tigers for a three-game series in Lexington over the weekend. Friday’s game will start at 6 p.m. ET and be shown live on the SEC Network+ with Mark Buerger and Carol Bruggeman on the call. Buerger and Bruggeman will have the call on Saturday afternoon at 5 p.m. ET on the SEC Network+ before a Noon ET finale against the Tigers on Sunday afternoon with Cara Capuano joining Bruggeman in the booth for an ESPNU national telecast.
Six. With her sixth home run in the bottom of the sixth inning, freshman Abbey Cheek tied the team lead with six homers in the 2016 season. Cheek is joined by senior Christian Stokes and sophomore Brooklin Hinz.
Cheek’s two-run home run in the bottom of the sixth inning was Wednesday’s key play in the game.
Shannon Smith was the key player in Wednesday’s game, throwing 4.0 innings allowing just one run on one hit and striking out seven batters in her time in the circle.
Eastern Kentucky took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth inning as Colonel second basemen Hannah Clark homered off S. Smith to leftcenter field, her team-leading sixth homer of the season. EKU 1, UK 0
After leaving the bases loaded in the third and fifth innings, Kentucky finally broke through in the bottom of the sixth as Cheek hit her sixth home run of the year, scoring Christian Stokes, who led off the inning with a single through the left side. Meagan Prince came in to get the final three outs of the game and close out UK’s fourth win in a row and sixth win this season at John Cropp Stadium. FINAL – No. 12 Kentucky 2, Eastern Kentucky 1
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