Mordecai Delivers Walk Off Grand Slam in Eighth
Feb. 28, 2009
DELAND, Fla. – Junior Destinee Mordecai chose the perfect time to come up with her first hit of the game as she delivered a walk-off grand slam to propel Kentucky to a 4-0 victory over Stetson in the Hatter Classic Saturday night.
With the international tie-breaker beginning in the extra frame, sophomore Megan Yocke was placed on second to start the inning. Stetson chose to intentionally walk sophomore Samantha DeMartine. Freshman Brittany Cervantes charted a sacrifice bunt to put runners into scoring position, and then the Hatters walked junior Natalie Smith with four straight pitches to load the bases for Mordecai.
Kentucky improves to 9-4 on the season with the victory and has strung together five consecutive victories.
After yielding a leadoff walk, the Wildcats' defense picked up three straight outs behind a pair of strikeouts and a fly out to open the top half of the first.
Kentucky loaded the bases in the bottom of the inning, but was unable to push across any runs. Sophomore Meagan Aull recorded a nice single into center field, while Yocke and Cervantes earned walks in the inning.
Stetson fired back in the top of the second by putting runners on first and second, but UK ended the threat with a beautiful double play to close out the inning.
The Blue and White had another opportunity in the bottom of the third, but were unable to convert. Aull took a base after she got plucked by a pitch and then advanced to second base after her second stolen base of the game. She shifted to third when Yocke flied out to deep right field. DeMartine also earned a base after getting hit by a pitch to put runners on the corners with two outs. Cervantes lined out to the shortstop ending UK's chances.
The Hatters threatened again in the top of the fourth, but UK once against was able to put out the fire. Stetson charted its first hit of the game with a one-out single, and then Matousek yielded a walk to put runners on first and second. The runners advanced on a sacrifice bunt to put them both in scoring position; however the number nine hitter lined out to Smith at second to end the inning unscathed for UK.
Smith reached base to lead off the bottom of the stanza when she sent a chopper into the middle of the infield which the shortstop mishandled for an error. UK got an out when Mordecai attempted a bunt that popped up into the catcher's glove. Pinch runner Allie Jest was able to steal second with senior Katie McCarty at-bat. The senior advanced the runner to third on a groundout to second base, but the inning ended when sophomore Annie Rowlands grounded out to second.
After retiring the Hatters in order in the top of the fifth, Johnson started the bottom of the inning with a single up the middle. She stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch. In between Johnson advancing along the base paths, UK suffered two pop-ups. With DeMartine at the plate, Stetson chose to intentionally walk Kentucky's clean-up hitter once again placing runners on the corners for Cervantes. The freshman sent a ball to the second baseman and appeared to be able to beat out the throw, but the Hatters' fielder chose to tag DeMartine in the base paths as she attempted to advance second once again ending the inning without UK able to push across a run.
The Hatters put a runner on base sandwiched in between two strikeouts in the top of the sixth. McCarty finished the inning corralling a grounder at third and getting the runner out at first.
Smith struck a hit up the middle to start the bottom of the frame, but Kentucky was unable to score after suffering a pair of strikeouts and a pop-up to the shortstop.
Stetson earned a walk to lead off in the top of the seventh and that's when UK's defense tightened. The Wildcats got the first out of the inning when the Hatters' batter attempted a bunt in which she then ran into. Yocke and Johnson hooked up to get the runner out at second as she attempted to steal second. The final out came when the number nine hitter grounded out to Smith at second.
The Wildcats couldn't come up with any last minute magic at the top of their order in the bottom of the seventh as Johnson drove a laser into right field that was caught. Aull popped up to the shortstop, and then Yocke's fly ball into shallow left center was snagged by an out-stretched Hatter centerfielder.
With the international tie-breaker rule beginning in the eighth inning, a Hatter was placed on second base to start the inning. UK inserted freshman Chanda Bell into the circle and her first out came on a fly out to left field. Stetson singled during the next at-bat to put runners on the corners, but UK turned back-to-back outs to end any threat.
Kentucky will play a final game tomorrow morning to wrap up play at the Hatter Classic. The Wildcats will face the Maryland Terrapins for the second time in as many days at 11 a.m. ET.
Live video and live stats are available for the Hatter Classic. Fans can logon to gohatters.com for more information.