No. 18 Wildcats Host Tennessee Tech Saturday
April 15, 2011
LEXINGTON, Ky. - The 18th-ranked Kentucky softball team will return home for a doubleheader with Tennessee Tech on Saturday. First pitch is set for 1 p.m. ET in the opening game.
The Wildcats are taking a break from Southeastern Conference action and are in the midst of a four-game home stand against non-conference opponents beginning with the Golden Eagles.
Kentucky (29-10 overall) is on a quest to become the first team in school history to total 30 or more victories in three consecutive seasons. The Blue and White are a mere one win shy of achieving this milestone. UK is 18-4 overall against non-conference opponents and owns an 8-1 mark in the friendly confines of the UK Softball Complex.
UK earned a sweep of Marshall in a doubleheader on Wednesday. The Wildcats were paced by junior Rachel Riley who became the fourth player this season to notch two or more home runs in a single game. Riley also earned a victory in the circle in the second game of the sweep. Freshman Ellen Weaver drilled her first career home run in leading UK to a win in the opening contest.
Junior Brittany Cervantes posted a pair of homers to increase her team-leading total to 13 for the year. Cervantes also drove in a combined five runs in the two games and has now plated 43 RBI on the season which is the third highest total in a single-season in school allure. Cervantes is having a career-season at the dish in leading UK in nearly every offensive category. She has already achieved career-highs in runs scored, hits, home runs, RBI, total bases, walks and stolen bases. Cervantes has charted an extra base hit in 19 games this season and has plated at least one score in 24 contests.
The Wildcats have blasted 48 home runs in the 2011 campaign - marking the most home runs during the Rachel Lawson era. The Blue and White are within striking distance of the single-season school record of 56 homers set back in 2007. Kentucky is just eight round trippers away from matching the record and nine shy of setting the new standard.
Tennessee Tech enters the doubleheader with the Wildcats owning a 16-19 overall record. The Golden Eagles captured a win at Eastern Kentucky on Wednesday, but fell to Weatern Kentucky on Thursday.
The Golden Eagles bat with a .252 clip as a team. Tennessee Tech is paced at the plate by Melody Christian who owns a .353 average and a team-best 18 stolen bases. Brittany Spalding has blasted four homers with a .267 batting average to go along with a team-high 21 RBI.
In the circle, the Golden Eagles have a staff with three pitchers. Holly Thomas has made a team-high 22 appearances and struck out 99 batters. Tennessee Tech's staff owns a 3.20 ERA on the year.
Complete coverage of the UK softball team can be found at UKathletics.com all season long.