Wildcats Strand Seven in Loss to Georgia
April 10, 2011
ATHENS, Ga. - No. 18 Kentucky stranded seven base runners and fell 9-1 to No. 2 Georgia in the final game of a three-game set in Athens, Ga., Sunday.
Kentucky falls to 27-10 on the year and 11-6 in Southeastern Conference action. Georgia pushes its record to 35-6 and 11-5 in league play. This marks the first time during the 2011 season UK has suffered a sweep to an SEC foe.
UK returns to action on Wed., April 13 for a doubleheader at Marshall. The first game is set to begin at 2 p.m. ET.
Junior Brittany Cervantes was 1-for-3 on the day with an RBI to mark the fifth straight game she has plated a score for the Blue and White. Sophomore Kara Dill extended her season-long hitting streak to six games with a single in the fifth inning. Senior Meagan Aull, junior Rachel Riley and freshman Emily Jolly were the other UK players with a hit in the contest.
UK missed out on an opportunity to grab an early lead to open the game. Aull singled through the right side with two outs to put a runner on base. Cervantes then sent a dribbler to short and was able to reach on a throwing error by the shortstop. Aull's heads-up base running allowed her to shift all the way to third during the play, but runners would be left on the corners with an inning-ending pop-out to second.
Aull has now registered a hit in 25 of UK's last 28 games, including two straight in the Georgia series.
For the third consecutive game the Bulldogs grabbed a lead in the bottom of the first inning. The home squad plated two runs thanks to a Brianna Hesson double and an Ashley Razey sacrifice fly.
Jolly posted a two-out single into shallow left field in the second, but the inning would come to a close on a groundout to third base leaving the third runner aboard of the game for the Blue and White.
Despite benefiting from a two-out error by UK, Riley and the defense escaped the home half of the second unscathed with a pop-up to freshman Krystal Smith at second to end the stanza.
Kentucky bridged the gap to just a one-run lead with a tally in the top of the third. Following a controversial called out on a Dill pop-up to second, Aull reached base with two outs by way of a walk. The speedy center fielder then swiped her 14th base of the season to shift into scoring position, and Cervantes delivered for the third straight game with an RBI single into shallow right-center to make the score 2-1.
Georgia responded with a run in the bottom of the third to run its advantage back to two scores. The Bulldogs plated a run behind four hits in the inning with Razey plating her second run of the game with a single into shallow right field.
The Wildcats left another runner on the base paths in the top of the fourth. Senior Samantha DeMartine led off the stanza with her second walk of the game. Freshman Lauren Cumbess shifted the runner into scoring position with a sacrifice bunt. The inning came to a close following consecutive outs with runner still standing on second.
Georgia increased its lead to 4-1 through four frames with another tally in the bottom of the fourth. The Bulldogs plated the score behind three singles in the stanza including an RBI-base hit by Hesson.
For the fifth consecutive inning the Wildcats left a runner on the base paths. Dill singled with a chopper back to the shortstop to keep her six-game hitting streak alive. The runner then swiped her 14th bag of the season and moved to third on a grounder back to the pitcher, but the inning came to a close with an inning-ending strikeout.
The Bulldogs plated an additional run in the bottom of the fifth benefiting from a walk and a pair of singles for a 5-1 edge.
Riley recorded a leadoff single into shallow left field, but the Wildcats would drop three consecutive outs to once again prevent an offensive rally.
Georgia notched four runs in the bottom of the sixth behind six hits in the inning to make the final score 9-1.
Complete coverage of the UK softball team can be found at UKathletics.com all season long.