Kentucky Softball Loses First Game of Georgia Series

Article written by:On3 imageKatelyn Perkins
Photo by | UK Athletics

Kentucky softball (21-7-1; 4-3 SEC) began its third SEC series of the season on Saturday, kicking off the opener with a 9-5 loss to the Georgia Bulldogs in Athens.

Both teams entered this matchup among the nation’s top 25, according to Softball America, with the No. 16 Wildcats coming in below the No. 7 Bulldogs. Georgia (28-6; 8-1 SEC) is one of the hottest teams in the country right now, having won 10 straight games with Saturday’s victory.

First on the mound for the ‘Cats was sophomore pitcher Izzy Harrison, who started strong with two strikeouts out of the gate. But things would quickly go south after she gave up a grand slam in the bottom of the first. Thankfully, that’s all the damage the Bulldogs could deal.

With no luck in the top of the first for UK and the grand slam in the bottom of the inning for Georgia, the Bulldogs jumped out to an early 4-0.

Moving to the top of the second with one runner on, sophomore Margaret Tobias hit a grounder that found its way into right field, bringing in Kentucky’s first score. After cutting the deficit down to three, the ‘Cats gained even more momentum with a RBI courtesy of junior Grace Lorsung, making it 4-2 in favor of the Bulldogs.

Momentum change

A pitching change was made in the third for Kentucky as graduate student Kennedy Sullivan came in for Harrison.

The score remained 4-2 heading into the fourth but that changed quickly after hits off of Sullivan led to four more runs being brought in by the Bulldogs. With the score at 8-2, UK was in desperate need of some production on offense.

Sophomore Taylor Ebbs got on base with a single and up next was the consistent leader for Kentucky, graduate student Kayla Kowalik. The Texas native hit a single to left field which moved Ebbs to third.

Next up was junior Vanessa Nesby, who dropped one in the hole and allowed Ebbs and Kowalik to score, making it 8-4 with Georgia still ahead.

UK still hanging in there

The ‘Cats weren’t done there though as junior Erin Coffel hit a RBI double to bring Nesby in and cut Georgia’s lead to 8-5.

Kentucky’s defense was able to hold Georgia to no runs scored in the bottom of the fourth. But the Bulldogs’ defense also did its job in the top of the fifth as the score remained 8-5 heading into the bottom of the inning. That score would hold firm entering the bottom of the sixth.

Defensive struggles

Multiple errors on defense for the ‘Cats led to another run allowed in the bottom of the sixth, making it 9-5 with Georgia on top.

Coffel led off for UK in a last-chance effort to make a comeback from a four-run deficit. But she and her teammates had no luck from the plate as a double play by the Bulldogs finished out the game with a 9-5 loss for the ‘Cats.

Game two is set for Sunday at 6:00 p.m. EST in Athens, GA on the SEC Network.

Loading comments...


Arthur Kaluma

Bio Blast: Arthur Kaluma

Wednesday is NBA Draft decision day. College basketball players must make their plans for the 2023-24 season known before the clock strikes midnight. Creighton wing Arthur Kaluma is returning to college basketball and immediately becomes one of the...