Softball Hosts South Carolina in Three-Game Series

April 9, 2010

Q and A with senior Natalie Smith | Game Notes Get Acrobat Reader

LEXINGTON, Ky. - The Kentucky softball team returns to the diamond Saturday and Sunday when its plays hosts to a three-game series with South Carolina this weekend. Kentucky and the Gamecocks will meet for a pair of games on Saturday beginning at 1 p.m. ET. Sunday, history will be made in Lexington when ESPNU broadcasts the first live televised game from the UK Softball Complex in school history at 2:04 ET.

Kentucky enters the series with a 22-16 overall record and a 7-9 mark in Southeastern Conference action. South Carolina is 10-27 overall and 0-16 in league play. A season ago, the Wildcats claimed the series with two wins in Saturday's doubleheader. South Carolina came back to steal the third game of the series in the regular season finale for both squads on Sunday.

Sophomore pitcher Chanda Bell is looking to take down her own single-season school record in strikeouts this weekend. Bell currently has 209 this season and is just seven shy of her 216 total she set as a freshman last year. On Wednesday, the Wildcats lost to No. 23 Louisville to complete this year's home-and-home meetings between the two rivals. Senior Molly Johnson started her 200th consecutive game in a UK uniform and added to her career school record with her 53rd career double.

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.

The Gamecocks are led at the plate by Laura Mendes who is batting .372 and has a team-best 28 RBI. As a unit, South Carolina is hitting .224 with 91 RBI and 37 doubles.

In the circle, the Gamecocks have used five different pitchers. Audrey Broyles has seen the field on eight occasions and holds a 3-3 record with a 0.99 ERA. Ashley Chastain and Kelsey Goodwin have combined for over 50 appearances on the year with Goodwin charting a team-high 55 strikeouts and Chastain with a team-best four victories.

South Carolina leads the overall series with a 33-11 mark, but the Blue and White captured a series win with a 2-1 mark in 2009.

Megan Yocke's game-winning RBI single and heads-up base running helped preserve a sweep of South Carolina and give the Kentucky softball team over 30 wins for just the second time in school history a year ago in Columbia, S.C.. Yocke's heroics lifted the visitors to a 4-3 win in 10 innings in game one and then Kentucky came up with a 5-1 victory in game two.

In game one, Yocke came up with her third game-winning hit of the SEC season and some swift base running to help UK win its 30th game of the season with a bit of heroics in the top of the 10th inning. Johnson opened the inning with a one-out double into right field to put a runner on base. After South Carolina's Kristen Stubblefield robbed sophomore Meagan Aull of a hit with a spectacular diving grab to hold Johnson at second Yocke singled up the middle with two outs and Johnson was able to cross home plate. During the relay home a wild throw by Stubblefield allowed Yocke to move to third. The Gamecocks' catcher threw it into left field during the exchange and the heads-up play by Yocke allowed her to come home for a 4-2 Kentucky win.

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

South Carolina Series Promotions

Saturday, April 10
- Gates open at Noon
- Chick-fil-A Junior Wildcat Club Day - Free admission for JWC members plus one guest with membership card or t-shirt
- Free admission with ticket stub from UK Baseball game vs. Alabama 4/9/10
- Free UK Softball wristbands for the first 50 UK fans
- Free UK bubbles for the first 50 kids 8th grade and under
- Inflatable will be set up on grass between softball and soccer (weather permitting)
- Entire UK team will sign autographs after the 2nd game along the sidewalk

Sunday, April 11
- Gates open at 1:00 pm
- Game televised on ESPNU
- Girl Scouts Day - Free admission for Girl Scouts and troop leaders if wearing their uniform or GS t-shirt
- Bluegrass Girls Softball League Day - Free admission for Bluegrass Softball League members plus one guest with printed e-mail
- Post-game youth clinic
- Entire UK team will sign autographs post-game along the sidewalk