Freshmen Carry Wildcats to 8-3 win over James Madison

Feb. 21, 2009

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CONWAY, S.C. -- Behind a four-RBI performance from freshman Cory Farris and five shutout innings from freshman Sean Bouthilette, making his first career start, the No. 19 Kentucky Wildcats posted a 8-3 win over the James Madison Dukes, on Saturday afternoon at Vrooman Field.

Kentucky (2-0) posted its second win of the season, after dispatching Sun Belt power Troy in its season opener on Friday, 8-3. The Wildcats turned to Bouthilette in the first game of a twin-bill, his first career appearance, with the freshman hurling five shutout innings, allowing only two hits, while striking out three.

Farris, a freshman outfielder from Florence, Ky., hit in the five-hole for the second consecutive game and delivered a 2-for-4, four RBI day. The Louisville Slugger High School All-American, who was a part of UK’s banner fourth-ranked recruiting class, was 1-for-3 in his first career start against Troy on Friday, adding an RBI, while scoring twice.

UK got multiple-hit games from Farris and shortstop Chris Wade, with Wade, Keenan Wiley and Chris McClendon each scoring twice. On the mound, Bouthilette notched his first career win, turning the ball over to freshman Alex Meyer in the sixth. Meyer, a 6-foot-8, 205-pound right-hander, allowed four infield hits in his three innings – all in the eighth – which translated into three runs allowed. Logan Darnell closed out the game for UK, despite loading the bases with one out in the ninth, before inducing the ground-ball double play, started by freshman Andy Burns at second base.

Kentucky jumped up to an early 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning, as Wiley led off with a walk and Wade laid down a perfect push-bunt single. After McClendon drew a walk to load the bags, clean-up man Troy Frazier notched an RBI with a bases-loaded walk. With the bases loaded, Farris ripped a two-RBI single into the opposite field, scoring Wade and McClendon.

In the second, UK got another run, as Wiley led off with a single into the gap in left-center field. Wade drew a walk to push Wiley to second and after a grounded double play put Wiley on third, he scored on a wild pitch with Frazier at the dish.

In the fifth inning, UK notched another run, as Farris reached on a two-out hit by pitch. After Marcus Nidiffer singled to third, Burns belted an RBI single into left field, scoring Farris.

The Wildcats added to its lead in the sixth, stretching the lead to 6-0. Freshman Chad Wright recorded his first career hit on a bunt single to lead off and after Wiley’s sacrifice, was prepared to tag from third base on a fly out to right field. However the wind played tricks on the right fielder, causing an error, moving Wright home and Wade to second.

In the eighth inning, JMU got to Meyer, as Mike Fabiaschi led off with an infield single to Wade at short, with Alex Foltz following with a single through the left side, which was vacated by Wade due to a JMU hit-and-run. Fabiaschi moved to second on a wild pitch, with Chris Johnson scoring Fabiaschi with an RBI groundout. Trevor Knight followed with an infield hit that scored Foltz and after another infield hit, Knight scampered home on a wild pitch.

UK got two more runs in the eighth, padding its lead. Wade reached on a two-out single, with McClendon following with a single through the right side. After Frazier drew his second walk of the day, Farris notched his second two-RBI single of the day, this one through the right side of the infield, just under the glove of the diving second baseman.