Cumbess Tosses Shutout in Win Over Wright State
Feb. 17, 2012
BOCA RATON, Fla. - Behind a shutout from pitcher Lauren Cumbess the No. 22/24 Kentucky softball team earned a 3-0 victory over Wright State in the team's opening game of the Florida Atlantic Kickoff Classic in Boca Raton, Fla. Sophomore Ginny Carroll and junior Alice O'Brien reached base on all three plate attempts to lead the offensive effort which plated three runs on three different RBI singles.
With the victory Kentucky improves to 2-3 on the season while Wright State drops to 2-3 on the year. UK will return to action immediately with a tilt against the host Florida Atlantic Owls in approximately 30 minutes.
Carroll opened the second inning with a double that dropped in over the center fielder's head. The sophomore then was able to scoot to third on a poor throw into the infield to move into prime scoring position. Cumbess wasted little time in driving in the run with a bloop single over the shortstop's head for the 1-0 Wildcat advantage. Kentucky's starter earned the win on the mound and is credited with driving in the game's winning score.
The Wildcats plated an addition two runs in the bottom of the fourth to grab a 3-0 lead. O'Brien earned a one-out infield single and promptly swiped second. Senior Brittany Cervantes then notched a single through the left side and quickly advanced to second on a throw attempting to get O'Brien at third. Following the second out of the inning, junior Kara Dill laced a single up the middle to plate O'Brien. Senior Rachel Riley then lofted a ball opposite field into right field to bring in Cervantes for the second run of the frame.
Kentucky's defensive effort came out strong in the first as Cumbess struck out the first two batters and induced a single back to her on the mound for a quick three-up, three-down inning.
Cervantes opened the home side of the frame by roping a double along the left field line. Following a strikeout, Dill tried to shift the runner to third, but the Raiders made a tremendous defensive play to get the lead runner. UK's speedy shortstop swiped second to move into scoring position, but the inning closed on a pop-up to short.
After strikeout the leadoff batter, Cumbess yielded a walk and a single up the middle in the second. Wright State shifted both runners into scoring position with a groundout to Dill at shortstop. Cumbess got the final out with a weak pop-up about 10 feet from home plate. A charging Cervantes was able to calmly toss the out to Krystal Smith to preserve the scoreless tie.
The Raiders produced a one-out single, but the Wildcats quickly dispersed of the base runner in her attempt to steal as Dill chased her down during the run-down. Cumbess then forced a grounder to Smith to end the inning with UK still ahead by one score.
Kentucky missed out on an opportunity to push across additional scores in the bottom half of the third when Riley and freshman Griffin Joiner produced consecutive two-out singles. Carroll then drew a walk to load the bases, but the inning ended on a grounder to short leaving the runners stranded.
Cumbess sat down the Raiders in order in the fourth which included two more strikeouts for the right-hander.
The Wildcats escaped a jam in the fifth when the Raiders earned a leadoff walk and then placed a second runner on base due to a Wildcat miscue. A sacrifice bunt shifted the runners into scoring position, but Kentucky then induced two consecutive outs to escape the inning unscathed.
UK had three players log walks in the bottom of the fifth, but UK stranded two more runners with a pop-up to short.
After yielding a two-out walk, Cumbess induced an inning-ending grounder to Smith at second in the sixth. For the first time in the game, UK did not get a runner on base in the home half of the sixth as the Blue and White dropped in order.
Kentucky's righty closed out the game with a strikeout to preserve the first shutout of the season.
Follow along with the UK softball program all season long at UKathletics.com.
Kentucky's Schedule at the Florida Atlantic Tournament
Friday, Feb. 17
Wright State - W, 3-0
Florida Atlantic - 6 p.m. ET
Saturday, Feb. 18
LIU Brooklyn - 9 a.m. ET
Michigan - 1 p.m. ET
Sunday, Feb. 19
Maryland - 11 a.m.