UK Rolls to Victory Behind Five-Run Second Inning
Feb. 24, 2012
STATESBORO, Ga. - Behind a five-run second inning the Kentucky softball team rolled to a 8-3 victory over North Florida in its opening game at the Georgia Southern Invitational in Statesboro, Ga. Junior Kara Dill tallied three hits and freshman Griffin Joiner notched a pair to lead the Wildcat bats who logged eight total in the game.
UK also got a terrific pitching performance from senior Rachel Riley who went the distance for the Wildcats' in her second win of the season. With the victory, Kentucky improves to 5-5 on the year while North Florida falls to 6-3.
Kentucky returns to action in 30 minutes with a matchup against Jacksonville State at approximately 2:20 p.m. ET.
Senior Brittany Cervantes laced a well-hit deep-fly ball into right-center that the Osprey's mishandled enabling UK's runner to advance to second. Riley quickly brought in the run with a single along the left field line to lift the Blue and White to a 1-0 lead.
Riley immediately dispersed of North Florida in the home half of the first. She induced a pair of groundouts and a line-out to Cervantes at third for the three outs.
Sophomore Lauren Cumbess opened the second inning with a single into right-center and senior Erika Silence drew a walk to place UK's first two batters on base. Sophomore Emily Gaines then single through the left side to bring in pinch runner Macy Allen for the frame's first score and ultimately the game's winning run. Following a fly-out to right field, Dill executed a suicide-squeeze to bring in pinch runner Ginny Carroll for the second score of the frame.
Joiner then laced a ball through the left side to bring home Gaines. Cervantes then tallied a walk to load the bases. Walks by junior Alice O'Brien and Cumbess plated the inning's final two scores with the bags loaded. The inning closed on a tremendous snag on a line-out to short with UK earning a 6-0 advantage.
North Florida plated a score in the home half of the fourth behind a pair of hits to bring the score to 6-1 in favor of the Cats.
O'Brien opened the fourth by reaching on her second walk of the game. She them swiftly stole second. Silence reached on a fielder's choice. North Florida mishandled the throw attempting to get O'Brien shifting to third and the bobble allowed O'Brien to move all the way home for the 7-1 lead.
Dill and Joiner opened the sixth with back-to-back singles into right field. O'Brien would eventually earn a two-out walk to load the bases, but the inning ended with a pop-up to second stranding all three runners.
Gaines earned a one-out walk in the top of the seventh to place a runner aboard. Sophomore Emily Jolly then sent a roller to third which the Osprey's made a poor throw in an attempt to get Gaines at second that enabled both runners to advance two bases with Gaines touching home plate and making the score 8-1.
North Florida scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh behind two hits and a Wildcat error to bridge the final score at 8-3.
Follow along with the UK softball program all season long at UKathletics.com.