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Kentucky Baseball drops series to Missouri

The Cats are now 2-10 in conference play.

Zach Bland/Mizzou Athletics

The Baseball Kentucky Wildcats are halfway through an eight game road trip after finishing off a three game series in Columbia against the Missouri Tigers.

This series did see the Cats steal a victory marking their first road win since February 17th (Austin Peay) but come up just short of their first series victory of SEC Play as they lost two out of three to the Tigers.

Here’s a recap of all the action in Columbia:

Game 1: UK 4, Mizzou 2

The series’ opener proved to be Kentucky’s first road win of SEC play in 2019, though it did not come easy.

Kentucky’s win came in comeback fashion as in the bottom of the first inning the Tigers took an early lead. Both Peter Zimmermann and Chad McDaniel hit run-scoring singles off Wildcat starter Jimmy Ramsey to give Mizzou a 2-0 lead.

With the score still 2-0 entering the top of the fourth, the Wildcats were able to chip into the Missouri lead. TJ Collett ripped an RBI double to score Ryan Shinn, who also doubled, cutting the Tigers lead to 2-1.

In the top of the sixth still down a run, the Cats rallied. Shinn singled, and Collett reached on an error setting up Breydon Daniel with two runners on with just one out. Daniel would deliver as he ripped a two-run double to left field, putting the Cats up in front 3-2 and chasing Tigers starter Jacob Cantleberry out of the game.

Holding onto a one-run lead heading into the top of the 8th inning, the Cats added much-needed insurance with one swing of the bat. Jaren Shelby slugged a solo home run to left field, extending the Kentucky lead to 4-2.

With a two-run lead entering the ninth, the Cats stuck with Carson Coleman to close the game out. He had struck out the side in the 8th.

The redshirt sophomore got into trouble as he walked Austin James and hit Josh Holt Jr. with a pitch, setting up the Tigers with runners on first and second with no one out.

Luckily, Coleman was able to clamp down recording a pair of strikeouts and getting the Tigers’ top hitter Chris Cornelius to fly out to centerfield to end the game and secure a 4-2 Wildcats win.

Game 2: Mizzou 5, UK 4

Game two saw Kentucky ace Zack Thompson get the start one game removed from throwing a complete game shutout against No. 4 Georgia.

Thompson again would be solid as he pitched six innings allowing only one earned run on five hits. The problem however was he gave up two unearned runs as well as he left the game with his team down on the scoreboard 3-0.

Thankfully for Thompson, his offense would not allow him to take the loss. In the top of the seventh Missouri native, Coltyn Kessler slugged a solo home run to cut the Mizzou lead to 3-1.

In the bottom of the eighth the Cats would open up their first lead of the ball-game thanks to the second long home run of the series by Jaren Shelby which put the Cats ahead 4-3.

Up 4-3 with six outs to go the Cats could smell victory. However, it would not be meant to me. The Tigers tied the game in the bottom of the 8th off of reliever Trip Lockhart as Paul Gomez slugged a solo home run.

With the score tied in the bottom off the ninth, the Cats called on Cole Ayers to push the game into extra innings. The freshman could not get the job done; however as Austin James ripped a walk-off single into left field to win the game for Missouri.

Game 3: Mizzou 9, UK 2

With the series on the line, the Cats opened up the series finale with a bang as Freshman Austin Schultz led off the game with a solo home run to put the Cats on top 1-0.

The Cats took the lead into the bottom of the third, but an error by Wildcat third basemen Coltyn Kessler allowed two Mizzou runs to score as the Tigers took their first lead of the day at 2-1.

However, the Cats would not go down quietly. Senior Ryan Shinn ripped a solo home run of his own in the top of the fourth to left as Kentucky pulled even at 2-2.

The game would not stay tied for long however as Mizzou’s Peter Zimmerman hit a two-run single in the bottom of the fifth and Kameron Misner and Zimmerman hit back to back solo home runs in the seventh as part of a five run seventh inning as the Tigers took a commanding 9-2 lead.

Missouri would not let go of the big leaders as they closed out the series victory.

The Bat Cats will continue their road trip Wednesday when they travel to Nashville for one game with the Lipscomb Bisons and a three-game set next weekend in Oxford against the No. 18 Ole Miss Rebels.