A tale of two defenses as UK Softball struggles at home


Junior Meagan Prince pitches the ball during the Wildcat’s game against the Eastern Kentucky Colonels John Cropp Stadium on Wednesday, April 13, 2016 in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Taylor Pence

Chase Campbell

Friday started No. 20 UK softball’s series against another young, tough SEC team in the No. 17 Tennessee Volunteers. The teams were the definition of youth and promising futures, as the two Top 20 teams started a combined three seniors, with only two more on the bench between them. However, the first meeting wasn’t nearly as close as the matchup would suggest, as the Cats were throttled 9-0.

Errors and slow defensive reactions killed the Cats, as they had four errors, more than the number of hits they netted. The Volunteers used their excellent batting to run rampant over the Cats’ slow defense, nailing seven hits to UK’s two en route to their dominating victory.

“It’s really hard to have a positive when you play defense the way that we played defense today,” said UK head coach Rachel Lawson. “If you don’t have good defense, it’s hard.”

The main positive from the game was in the pitching of Meagan Prince, their main defensive force over the last two series.

“I do believe Meagan threw really well, the score didn’t show it, but I thought Meagan came out, she threw hard” said Lawson.

Prince struck out nearly a third of the batters in front of her, netting half the team’s outs by herself in the three innings that she pitched. In the 15 batters that came in front of her, she struck out four, even though the Cats allowed five runs while she was on the mound.

The Cats will have another shot at the rolling Volunteers Saturday, where Coach Lawson hopes UK can redeem itself.

“The number one theme is, if we don’t get tougher on defense, we’re going to see a similar result.”