Kyle Cody Pitches Baseball to Series Sweep
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LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Kyle Cody turned in his second consecutive dominating start, fanning eight over seven one-run innings, pitching Kentucky to a 9-4 win over Northern Kentucky in the second game of a doubleheader, with the Wildcats sweeping the impromptu three-game series, on a pleasant Sunday afternoon at Cliff Hagan Stadium.
Kentucky (12-3) stretched its winning streak to nine games with the doubleheader sweep and the three wins. UK was slated to play UMass in its only non-conference home series of the year but winter storm Thor made the travel for the Minutemen impassable. UK scrambled to find NKU, with the Norse venturing down for the three-game series, which included a 6-0 win on Saturday and a 7-6 win in the first game of the doubleheader.
A native of Chippewa Falls, Wis., Cody (2-1) continued a string of excellence with his second consecutive strong start. The Southeastern Conference Co-Pitcher of the Week, Cody was coming off seven no-hit innings in his last start on Saturday. He had his hitless innings pitched streak snapped at 7.2 innings after a two-out single in the first inning. A 6-foot-7, 245-pounder, Cody's lone damage allowed was a solo home run in the sixth inning, scattering four hits over his outing. Including his start last week, Cody has worked 14 innings over his last two outings, allowing just one run and five hits.
On the year, Cody has struck out 26 and walked just three in 21 innings, allowing 14 hits.
UK used Andrew Nelson and Brad Schaenzer to get through the eighth inning, allowing an unearned run. Freshman Zach Pop came on to get the final out of the game in the ninth.
The Wildcats were led by a three-RBI day from leftfielder Ka'ai Tom, who was 2-for-4. UK also got two-hit days from Greg Fettes and JaVon Shelby. Riley Mahan, Connor Heady and Kyle Barrett each collected hits, with Dorian Hairston scoring a run.
Northern Kentucky (2-11) starter Trey Ganns (0-1) suffered the loss, allowing three hits and two runs in two innings of work. NKU used Tyler Miller, Cody Cooper, Aric Harris, Alex Bolia and Jake Shaw in relief.
UK will return to action on Tuesday, playing host to Cincinnati at 7 p.m. at Cliff Hagan Stadium. The game will be televised live on the SEC Network with Mike Morgan and Chris Burke calling the action.
The Wildcats took a 2-0 lead in the second inning, as Mahan reached on a misplayed bunt and Fettes followed with a bunt single. After Mahan scored on a balk and Fettes moved into scoring position, Carson drew a walk and Heady laid down a bunt single. Hairston then forced in the second run with a sacrifice fly to leftfield.
UK added two runs in the fourth inning, as Heady drew a walk and Hairston was hit by a pitch. After Barrett drew a walk to load the bases, Shelby forced in a run with a base-loaded walk and Tom was hit by a bases-loaded pitch.
NKU got on the board in the sixth inning as Cole Bauml slugged a homer over the rightfield fence, his third home run of the year.
UK got a run back in the seventh, as Mahan drew a walk with one out, scoring on a double by Fettes, ripped down the line.
UK mounted a rally in the bottom of the eighth inning, plating four runs for a 9-2 lead. Storm Wilson was hit by a pitch to leadoff and Barrett chopped a double. Shelby then loaded the bases with an infield chopper, before Tom singled to leftfield to score Wilson and Barrett. After a fly ball pushed a pair of runners into scoring position, Mahan doubled into the left-centerfield gap.
NKU scored a pair of unearned run in the ninth on a two-out throwing error with a runner at second base.