Six-Run Second Stanza Dooms Wildcats
March 12, 2011
LEXINGTON, Ky. - A six-run second inning from No. 7/8 Tennessee provided enough offense for the Lady Vols to take down No. 23 Kentucky, 10-0, in the second game of a three game series Saturday at the UK Softball Complex. Following UK's 9-6 win on Friday night, the teams will square off Sunday at 1 p.m. ET to decide the series winner.
With the loss, Kentucky falls to 15-4 overall on the year and 1-1 in the Southeastern Conference. Tennessee improves to 20-3 and 1-1 in league play.
Two players charted multi-hit performances for the Blue and White as the Wildcats stranded six runners on base throughout the game. Senior Megan Yocke and freshman Lauren Cumbess led the charge with 2-for-2 days. Senior Meagan Aull and sophomore Alice O'Brien also notched hits for the home team.
Cumbess started the game for the Wildcats in the circle and takes the loss to fall to 2-1 on the year. Classmate Ellen Weaver worked five innings of relief action, striking out five and giving up four runs all coming in the top of the seventh.
After holding Tennessee scoreless to open the game, Yocke began the bottom of the inning with a leadoff single. Sophomore Kara Dill pushed the runner into scoring position with a sacrifice bunt, but the Wildcats' offense stalled without advancing Yocke any further following a pair of fly outs.
Tennessee struck for the six runs in the top of the second behind four hits in the frame. The Lady Vols also benefited from a pair of walks. Shelby Burchell capped the scoring off for the visitor's with a two-run home run that just cleared the left-field foul pole for the 6-0 lead it would never relinquish.
Kentucky had another opportunity in the second when Cumbess led off with a single through the gap in left. Following a dropped foul ball by the Lady Vols, junior Rachel Riley earned a base with a walk to place two runners on with no outs. A fielder's choice followed and got the lead runner at third. Senior Samantha DeMartine was plucked with a pitch to load the bases with just one out, but Kentucky would ground into a double play to end the inning.
In the home half of the third, Yocke once again got things started by reaching base with a walk. Following a grounder back to the pitcher and a foul out, Aull singled through the right side. Yocke attempted to stretch the play into an RBI-single, but was called out at home during the relay from right field.
Tennessee tacked on four more runs to make the final score at 10-0 in the top of the seventh. The Lady Vols plated the four scores behind five hits including a double along the left field line by Jessica Spigner.
The rubber match between the two squads will take place, Sunday at 1 p.m. ET. Kentucky has not won a series with its border-state rival since sweeping all four games in 2000.
Complete coverage of the Wildcat softball team all season long can be found at UKathletics.com.