Yocke Leads Offensive Explosion in Win

April 10, 2010

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LEXINGTON, Ky. - Junior Megan Yocke led the Kentucky offensive explosion in an 11-3 victory over South Carolina in the first game of a doubleheader Saturday at the UK Softball Complex. Yocke blasted her second career grand slam and brought in a total of five runs to lead the bats. Seniors Molly Johnson and Natalie Smith were a combined 6-for-6 with six runs scored to add to the offensive output.

Kentucky improves its record to 23-16 overall and 8-9 in Southeastern Conference action. South Carolina drops to 10-28 overall and 0-17 in league play.

Sophomore Chanda Bell was her usual steady self in the circle picking up her 13th victory of the season. Bell struck out nine batters on the afternoon to increase her total to 218 on the season and breaking her own school record of 216 strikeouts in a single season set just last year.

Kentucky registered a season-high tally of runs with 11 and eight batters registered at least one hit. Smith and Johnson led the way with three apiece, while Samantha DeMartine added a pair of doubles.

In the opening frame South Carolina had a pair of base runners as the Gamecocks earned a walk and singled up the middle of the infield. However, Bell would go on to strikeout the side to end the threat.

Johnson opened up the offense with a chopper into left field. She then promptly swiped her 15th base of the season to get into scoring position immediately. Smith then singled up the middle and Johnson was able to come home to score for the game's first tally. Yocke advanced the runner with a sacrifice bunt, and DeMartine brought Smith home from second with a double into deep centerfield. The rally did not stop there as Brittany Cervantes found a hole in left field to place runners on the corners. Cervantes stole second to put two runners in scoring position. Rachel Riley brought in the third run of the inning with a single into right field to make the score 3-0 early in favor of the home team.

The Wildcats added four runs in the home half of the second on the second grand slam of Yocke's career. Annie Rowlands, Johnson and Smith all had consecutive hits to load the bags and Yocke delivered a homer over the left field fence for a 7-0 lead.Bell tied her own school record in strikeouts thrown in a season with two more strikeouts in the top of the third for seven on the game. Her total increased to 216 on the year matching her entire 2009 season total.

Kentucky's offense continued to soar with four more runs in the bottom of the third for an 11-0 advantage. Jennifer Young in her first career at-bat earned a walk and Destinee Mordecai followed with a base on balls of her own. Johnson found a gap in right-center for a bases-clearing double. Smith earned her third hit of the contest to place runners on the corners and Yocke drilled a deep fly ball into left field for a sacrifice fly and her fifth RBI of the game. DeMartine then connected on her second double of the game to bring in Smith from first and the fourth run of the stanza.

The Gamecocks struck for three runs in the top of the fourth. Two of those runs came on an error by the Blue and White to make the score 11-3 in favor of UK. Bell was able to notch her eight strikeout of the game and the 217th of the season setting a new UK school record.

Sunday's game will air live on ESPNU - the first of two Sunday games on the network for the Wildcats this season. First pitch is set for 2:04 p.m. ET with Beth Mowins and Michele Smith on the call.

For the most up-to-date information on the UK softball team please visit UKathletics.com.