Softball’s rally falls short in SEC opening round

 

 

The UK softball season was put on pause Thursday evening with a 6-4 loss in the opening round of the SEC Tournament to No. 11 Georgia (41-14).

The 29-28 Cats trailed the Bulldogs by five runs when the top of the seventh inning got underway.

Facing a new pitcher, Georgia sophomore Morgan Montemayor, the Cats pounced.

Senior Rachel Riley opened the inning with a single to the left side. Freshman Griffin Joiner mimicked her elder teammate, but each runner advanced on a passed ball.

A double to the gap in right-center by junior Alice O’Brien drove in the two runners to cut UK’s deficit to three runs.

Following the inning’s first out on a groundout, sophomore Ginny Carroll reached on a fielding error by Georgia’s third baseman.

A couple of teases by UK’s batters along the left field foul line kept the opportunities coming. After coming up short on more than one occasion, Bulldogs senior Brittany Hubbard made a diving grab in left field to put Georgia one out away from advancing.

Following the inning’s second passed ball, sophomore Emily Jolly hit a single to the third baseman that scored O’Brien from third to make the score 6-4.

Once the top of the order returned, Georgia reverted back to the game’s starting pitcher senior Erin Arevalo to closeout the game.

Arevalo elected to not pitch around senior Brittany Cervantes, who scored UK’s lone run until the seventh on a solo home run.

Cervantes reached on another single to third, but junior Kara Dill was called out moments later on her chopper to the second baseman.

Sunday’s selection show will determine the fate of UK’s current group of seniors. While they are only a game over .500, the Cats have the No. 32 RPI in the nation.

ESPNU will cover the selection show Sunday at 10 p.m. EST.