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Mingione Thanks Kentucky Fans Following Historic College World Series Run

Nick Roushby:Nick Roush06/25/24

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Kentucky baseball fans waited years for this moment. The Bat Cats delivered in 2024 with the program’s first trip to the College World Series.

It was one of many firsts for the Kentucky baseball team. It was the first time the Wildcats ever hosted a Super Regional and just the second time the team ever took home an SEC Championship. The fanbase got a front-row seat to watch history unfold at Kentucky Proud Park.

“I’m just so thankful that our people, the Big Blue Nation, got a chance to see us win three championships on our home field,” Nick Mingione said on Tuesday’s Kentucky Sports Radio.

“They had a chance to watch us win the SEC on our home field and the Big Blue Nation showed out. Then we won a Regional Championship and then a Super to go to Omaha for the first time. I’m just so thankful that we were able to give so many people those experiences that hopefully they’ll remember forever.”

Kentucky went wire-to-wire to win a share of the SEC Championship, giving the Cats a luxurious run to Omaha from the friendly confines of Kentucky Proud Park. Once they punched a ticket to the College World Series, many folks around the college baseball world wondered, including Mingione, would the Big Blue Nation show up? The answer was an emphatic yes.

“It really was amazing and in a lot of ways a dream come true because you guys know this. This has been an opportunity of a lifetime that I’ve gotten. This has been our goal from the very beginning to not only take a team (to Omaha) but to win the National Championship. To be able to go there and quite frankly, there was a lot of people that asked me like, ‘What do you think’s gonna happen? Are they gonna come?’ I’m like, ‘Hey, we’ve never been here. We don’t know. But you gotta think they’re coming. Right?’ I don’t know what to expect. Are they working? Did they plan their vacations already?

Mingione added, “Just like the Big Blue Nation has done all year and for the last couple of years, they have not disappointed.”

The Kentucky baseball coach has not had a moment to settle down and reflect on this season’s success. Mingione is back in Lexington building a roster for the next Kentucky baseball season. Even so, he still wanted to join Kentucky Sports Radio to share just how much the support from the fans has meant to him and his program.

“If they could just hear my voice, just a sincere appreciation for the time, the effort, the energy, the resources, that was not a cheap trip. And so I’m just — I don’t know all the money they spent. I don’t know all the sacrifices that had to make, but guys, we are so thankful that they did and hopefully, we gave them an experience and something to be proud of.”

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2024-07-14