Wildcats Drop 2-0 Affair to Florida State
Feb. 19, 2011
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - No. 24 Kentucky registered six hits, but left seven runners on base including three in the top of the seventh and fell 2-0 to Florida State Saturday afternoon in Tallahassee, Fla. Six different UK batters including a trio of freshmen registered a hit in the loss.
Kentucky falls to 6-2 overall on the season, as Florida State improves to 6-3. Kentucky claims the No. 2 seed in the tournament and will play Georgia Southern at approximately 5:30 p.m. ET this evening.
Junior pitcher Chanda Bell yields her first loss of the season despite working 6.0 innings and striking out four. She limited the Seminoles to just three hits and gave up just one walk in the loss. Freshman Aubrey Lamar recorded her first career hit for the Blue and White to lead the offense.
Bell and Florida State hurler Sarah Hamilton were in a pitcher's duel to open the game. Both right-handers retired the first eight batters they faced before walking the No. 9 batter. The defenses' helped the pitchers get out of frame and escape unscathed.
Kentucky had a prime opportunity to scratch the scoreboard in the visitor's side of the fourth. Following an opening out, senior Meagan Aull executed a terrific bunt to register the first hit of the game. Junior Brittany Cervantes followed with a single into left field to place two runners aboard. Senior Samantha DeMartine shifted the runners into scoring position on a grounder to short, but the inning would come to a close on a strikeout leaving two runners on base.
Florida State struck for two runs in the home side of the fourth to take the early 2-0 edge. The Seminoles got a leadoff triple to begin the rally. The first run came home on a single and then an RBI double brought in the final run of the frame.
Lamar notched her first career hit in the top of the fifth with a two-out single up the middle. Lamar battled to a 3-2 count and ripped a liner up the gut to place a runner on base. However, UK would once again leave a runner stranded with a pop-up to first to end the inning.
Senior Megan Yocke started the top of the sixth by drawing a walk and getting UK's leadoff batter aboard. Aull laid down another terrific bunt and appeared to reach first safely when Florida State's second baseman was off the bag attempting to reach a high-thrown ball. However, Aull was ruled out, essentially executing a sacrifice bunt to advance Yocke. Cervantes shifted Yocke to third with a slow grounder back to first and the inning ended with UK's catcher on third with an inning-ending strikeout.
UK attempted a late rally in the top of the seventh when a pair of freshmen recorded back-to-back singles. Pinch hitter Ellen Weaver found a gap in left field and Lauren Cumbess followed in a nearly the same spot. After consecutive outs, sophomore Kara Dill tapped a bunt along the third base line and easily beat out the throw to load the bases. Kentucky could not finish the rally, however, as the final out of the game came on a pop-up to shortstop.
Florida State will play Middle Tennessee State and the Kentucky-Georgia Southern game will follow immediately following the conclusion of the game. The winners of the two games will meet at 12:30 p.m. ET in the Championship game tomorrow. The losers of the games will face off in a consolation game at 10 a.m. ET Sunday.
Complete coverage of the Wildcat softball team all season long can be found at UKathletics.com.
UK's complete schedule at Florida State
Sat., Feb. 18 vs. Georgia Southern, 5:30 p.m. ET
Sun., Feb. 19 vs. TBA, 10 a.m./12:30 p.m. ET