UGA Baseball wins series against #4 Kentucky, behind Webb’s Grand-Slam in 8th
The University of Georgia Bulldogs showed no signs of being the inferior team in a three game series with the Nations #4 Kentucky Wildcats. After taking game one and dropping game two, the Bulldogs wanted to end the series showing that they would never back down from a fight, and boy did they ever. The Bulldogs sent sophomore, Kevin Smith who had a 5.94 and a 3-5 record, to the mound to face Kentucky’s, red-shirt freshman, Justin Lewis who holds a 3.32 ERA and a 6-2 record.
Wildcats, Lewis began his afternoon giving up a single and one strikeout, giving him a run free, clean first inning. Bulldog’s, Smith, wanting to set a tone for the afternoon, responded by posting the same stats, showing that he was ready to pitch. To begin the second, Lewis fell into some trouble when he gave up a solo home run to Bulldogs, fifth place batter, LJ Talley who got ahold of a fastball over the plate and sent it to deep right center, giving the Bulldogs the lead at 1-0.
Although being down a run, the Wildcats seized an opportunity and jumped on Bulldogs, in the bottom of the third, when Smith gave up back to back doubles to Kentucky’s, Evan White and Zach Reks, allowing them to tie the game at 1-1.
The pitching battle continued as both offenses couldn’t get their feet underneath them, giving up 13 strikeouts between both pitchers. Bulldogs, Smith, being in a position that he has rarely be in all year, had one mistake that cost him a run in the bottom of the seventh, by giving up a solo home run to Kentucky’s sophomore, Riley Mahan. Mahan crushed one over the left-center wall giving the Wildcats the lead and ending Smith’s afternoon after eight hits and six strike outs in seven innings. After striking out three in the top of the seventh, Kentucky ended Lewis’ outing after allowing five hits and seven strike outs in seven innings. Wildcats then sent out their relief pitcher, Logan Salow, who had been unstoppable up to this point, posting a 0.43 ERA to the mound.
Even though the Bulldogs season hadn’t gone their way with a 18-29 record, they found a way to battle back in the top of the eighth. Salow, facing his first batter, gave up a bunt for a single to Georgia’s, Tucker Bradley, giving them a speedy runner on first. This caused problems for Salow as he now had to worry about first base. Salow then gave up a RBI double courtesy of Georgia’s, Michael Curry, to allow the Bulldogs to tie the game at 2-2. Salow was able to force a groundout but fell into trouble when he couldn’t find the strike zone and gave up a walk to Georgia’s, Keegan McGovern, followed by a single by LJ Talley. This ultimately set up Georgia’s Mitchell Webb, who was 1-8 in the series, up to bat with the bases loaded and one out. Salow, knowing he had to put the ball in play, left a pitch over the plate and Webb made him pay! With a 2-2 count, Webb drilled a ball that carried over the right-center field for a grand-slam and gave Georgia a 6-2 lead! Kentucky then decided to take out Logan Salow, after showing he didn’t have his usual fire, ended up with four hits and five earned runs in 0.1 innings.
The Wildcats were unable to find any last minute offense and lost 6-3, losing the game and series to the Georgia Bulldogs.
The Bulldogs now 19-29 will face Georgia Tech at SunTrust Park on Tuesday at 7:00pm EST.
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