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Kentucky Softball Falls Late to Florida Gators on Friday

3 min read
Kentucky Softball Falls Late to Florida Gators on Friday

The Kentucky Lady Bat ‘Cats needed a big pick me up on Friday night. After a disappointing weekend against Mississippi State, Kentucky (28-19-1, 8-14) faced off against the No. 17 Florida Gators (34-17, 10-11) on Friday night in Lexington. The matchup marked UK’s last home series of the regular season.

Although the ‘Cats stayed up the whole game, the Gators made a seventh inning comeback to steal a 3-2 victory.

‘Cats come out strong

To start the game, Kentucky came out on defense as junior and injury-ridden Stephanie Schoonover took to the mound. Schoonover held the Gators to no runs allowed as both teams went into the bottom of the first. Super senior and UK’s anchor, Kayla Kowalik stepped up to get on base first for the ‘Cats. After Kowalik got on, Kentucky native Kennedy Sullivan hit a homer to left field that put the Wildcats up early, 2-0.

New hair. Same power.

KENNEDY!

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— Kentucky Softball (@UKsoftball) May 5, 2023

At the top of the second, Kentucky’s defense continued to hold strong as Florida had bases loaded, and only one out against them. Schoonover and Kowalik had a double-play at home and first that sent the game into the bottom of the inning still with no Gator runs. The ‘Cats were unable to bring in anymore runs themselves as the score remained 2-0 going into the third frame.

Gators gain momentum in the fifth

Unfortunately for both teams, each of their defenses crushed it in the third and fourth innings as neither allowed any runs scored. At the top of the fifth the momentum shifted when Florida scored one off of Schoonover, making it a 2-1 game. Sloan Gayan came in for relief and got the job done as she got a strikeout to keep the score at 2-1 heading into the bottom of the fifth.

BIG TIME SLOAN!

2-1 Wildcats
Middle 5th

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— Kentucky Softball (@UKsoftball) May 6, 2023

The Wildcats were still struggling from the plate at the bottom of the fifth. Hitting woes were striking the ‘Cats as they went to the sixth. In the top of the sixth, Kentucky had two outs on Florida with two runners on. Third baseman Grace Lorsung snagged a line drive that was hit straight at her which held the score at 2-1.

UK fails to close

All that UK had to do was hold the Gators in the top of the seventh and they would have a huge advantage going into the rest of the weekend, but they were unable to do so as Gayan gave up a two-run homer. Florida was up 3-2 as both teams went into the bottom of the inning.

Florida did not allow the ‘Cats to bring in any more runs and ended up winning 3-2 late in the seventh off of a two-run bomb. This latest UK loss marks their fourth straight SEC loss.

Both teams will be back at John Cropp Stadium on Saturday afternoon at 3 p.m. as Kentucky will look to even up the games in the series.

The post Kentucky Softball Falls Late to Florida Gators on Friday appeared first on On3.

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