Kentucky Clinches Series With Second Win Over Arkansas
March 20, 2010
LEXINGTON, Ky. - With a 4-2 victory over Arkansas in the second game of the series, the Kentucky softball team earned its first conference series win with its second win of the day over the Razorbacks Saturday afternoon. Senior Natalie Smith went 2-for-3 at the plate with a run batted in and a run scored in the winning effort.
Kentucky improves to 19-9 on the season and 4-3 in Southeastern Conference action. Arkansas drops to 17-10 and 2-2 in league play.
Sophomore pitcher Chanda Bell claimed her 11th victory of the season in the complete game effort. The right-hander tossed 10 strikeouts and yielded just two hits and walked just one in the win.
Brittany Cervantes went 2-for-3 at the dish and added an RBI. Megan Yocke was 2-for-2 and charted a two-run double to provide the offensive spark for the Wildcats. Much like the opening game of the series the Blue and White struck first with a run in the home half of the first. Smith started the UK offense with a two-out single into centerfield. Cervantes then kept the rally going by singling through the left side. Yocke brought Smith home from second with a well-timed single into left-center for the game's first score and a UK 1-0 lead.
Kentucky added to its lead with a run in the bottom of the third to take a 2-0 edge. Annie Rowlands reached base on a close play at first. She hit a chopper to the shortstop and the Razorbacks' Brittany Griffiths mishandled it and the throw was late allowing Rowlands to reach base. Molly Johnson advanced the runner into scoring position and then Kara Dill shifted her to third with another sacrifice hit. Smith drove in the run with a single through the right side for the second run of the game.
Arkansas plated its first run of the series with a solo home run from Sandra Smith in the top of the fourth as the Razorbacks inched closer at 2-1.
UK had a great opportunity in the bottom of the fourth when Yocke and Meagan Aull each reached base. Yocke earned a walk and Aull singled through the right side. However, the Wildcats would leave the runners stranded as the Blue and White suffered three consecutive outs.
The Wildcats added to its lead with a two-run fifth inning. Johnson led off the inning with a double into right field. She would round home on a two-out RBI single by Cervantes through the left side. Yocke would then drive in Cervantes from second with a double into the left-center gap for a 4-1 advantage by the Blue and White.
Arkansas plated a run in the top of the seventh in a comeback effort when the Razorbacks added another score on a solo home run, but the late scoring effort was not enough as the Blue and White prevailed by a 4-2 margin.
The teams will squad off for the second game of the series later this afternoon. A complete recap can be found at UKathletics.com.