clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Bat Cats End Skid, Beat St. Josephs 16-9

UK Athletics

After a loss in four tries, the Bat Cats downed St. Joseph’s in the second game of their Virginia road swing, 16-9, to hand skipper Nick Mingione the first win of his tenure.

Following the same trend plaguing the starting rotation, Sean Hjelle started hot and then troubles sent him to yet another early exit. Hjelle retired the first five batters he faced. However, two infield hits and then a gapper loaded the bases. Then St.Joe’s Peter Sitaras launched the ball over the right field fence to the Hawks up 4-0.

Hjelle stymied the Hawks in the top of the 3rd, getting them down two outs and a strike away from ending the inning. Dominic Cuoci, the Hawks’ star slugger, smashed the next pitch out of the park to increase his team’s lead to 5-0. Soon after Hjelle gave up the ball after 4 ⅓ innings of work in which he gave up ten hits, nine earned runs and struck out four.

A sacrifice fly by Zack Reks and a Riley Mahan ground-out RBI in the bottom of the inning drew Kentucky to within three, 5-2.

In the bottom of the 4th, Kentucky rallied to take the lead with a seven-run inning, 9-5. Luke Becker, Connor Heady, Kole Cottam, and Marcus Carson all drove in runs.

A three-run bomb by Cucoi, his second homer of the gamer, half an inning later and another infield RBI tied the game at nine all.

In the bottom of the 6th, after a bases-loaded walk put UK back in front, Heady cleared the bases with a double to extend the lead to 13-9.

During the next inning, Riley Mahan’s RBI single, Cottam’s sac fly, and a Carson RBI triple stretched the lead to 16-9.

Zack Pop (1-0) got his first win of the season after 3 ⅔ innings of work out of the bullpen. Pop struck out four, gave up two hits, and did not conceded a run. He and Chris Machamer, the closer, continued the pen’s stretch of excellence.

Six Wildcats had multi-hit games, and the team belted fourteen overall.

Kentucky plays Old Dominion later today at 4 P.M.