The Cats get something going in the bottom of the ninth. Keenan Wiley leads off by lining a single over shorstop Bobby Haney, and Spencer Korus follows with a walk. A four-pitch walk to Chad Wright loads the bases with none out.
Chris Bisson strikes out swinging. Chris Wade’s fly to left scores Wiley, with Korus and Wright staying put. Chris McClendon bounces out as Blake Cooper completes an eight-hit distance performance. Final score: South Carolina 4, Kentucky 2.
Cats trail by 3 going to bottom of 9th
Jackie Bradley Jr. starts the South Carolina ninth with a double down the right-field line. He takes second on Whit Merrifield’s sacrifice bunt. Nick Ebert draws a walk, putting runners on the corners with one out, and knocking Clint Tilford from the game. Left-hander Logan Darnell gets the call from the Kentucky bullpen.
Darnell promptly strikes out DeAngelo Mack. Right-hander Braden Kapteyn, already in the game as DH, gets the call for face Andrew Crisp. Kapteyn does the job with a called third strike.
With Carolina’s Blake Cooper trying to finish a complete game, going to the bottom of the ninth: South Carolina 4, Kentucky 1.
Going to the 9th: Carolina 4, Kentucky 1
In the top of the eighth, South Carolina strands a runner, Scott Wingo, who was hit by a pitch.
Kentucky gets a Chris McClendon walk and Gunner Glad single in the bottom of the seventh, but both are stranded. Going to the ninth inning: South Carolina 4, Kentucky 1.
Gamecocks lead Wildcats 4-1 through 7th
In the top of the seventh, one-out singles by Bobby Haney and Jackie Bradley Jr., drive UK’s Tyler Henry from the mound. Right-hander Clint Tilford gets the call from the ‘pen.
Whit Merrifield welcomed Tilford with a run-scoring double down the right-field line, with Bradley stopping at third. With the infield drawn in, Nick Ebert lined a two-run single past a diving UK third baseman Chris McClendon.
Tilford got the next three batters. But South Carolina leads 4-1.
In the bottom of the seventh, UK got two-out singles by Spencer Korus and Chad Wright. They were stranded when Chris Bisson was retired on a close play at first.
At the end of seven innings: South Carolina 4, Kentucky 1.
Cats, Gamecocks tied 1-1 through 6th
UK strands a runner in a scoreless sixth inning. Going to the seventh: UK 1, South Carolina 1.
Gamecocks tie with run in sixth
So much for settling down.
UK’s Alex Meyer opened the sixth inning by issuing his sixth walk of the game, and his third to Nick Ebert. Meyer’s third wild pitch of the game moved Ebert to second. And DeAngelo Mack drove in the tying run with a single up the middle.
That ended Meyer’s day as Coach Gary Henderson called to the bullpen for righty Tyler Henry.
Henry set down the next three batters in order.
Midway through the sixth: Kentucky 1, South Carolina 1.
Cats take 1-0 lead in fifth
After struggling through two innings, UK right-hander Alex Meyer has settled down.
In the fifth, recorded his first 1-2-3 inning of the game, getting a pair of groundouts and his fourth strikeout of the day.
Braden Kapteyn led off UK’s half of the fifth with a double to left-center. A sacrifice bunt by Keenan Wiley moved Kapteyn to third base. Spencer Korus brought him home with the game’s first run, sending a double over the head of center fielder Whit Merrifield.
Korus made it to third on Chad Wright’s bunt, but was stranded when Chris Bisson grounded out.
After five innings: Kentucky 1, South Carolina 0.
Nothing doing in the fourth inning
Carolina wasted a two-out single by Kyle Enders. Through four innings, the Gamecocks have left at least one runner on base in every inning, five total.
Kentucky went down 1-2-3 in the fourth.
Through four, both teams have no runs on two hits.
Still no score through three innings
Carolina wasted a two-out walk in the third inning.
The Gamecocks made a defensive switch, subbing Kyle Enders for Justin Dalles behind the plate. Dalles appeared to suffer an injury in the first inning, by a ball that deflected off of UK batter Chris McClendon.
The Wildcats wasted a two-out infield single by Chris Bisson.
Through three innings: no score.
Scoreless through two innings
UK starter Alex Meyer did his best Houdini impression in the second.
South Carolina’s Andrew Crisp led off with a single and Jeffrey Jones walked. A wild pitch advanced both runners, and Justin Dalles walked to load the bases with none out.
But Meyer struck out Scott Wingo, picked off Jones at second and got Bobby Haney on a dribbler to the mound, escaping unscathed.
Carolina’s Blake Cooper retired the Cats in order.
At the end of two innings: no score.
No score through first
Both teams turned double plays in a scoreless first inning.
Two walks and a two-base throwing error gave South Carolina runners on the corners with one out. But DeAngelo Mack flied to Chad Wright in short left, and Wright threw out Jackie Bradley Jr., at the plate to end the top of the first.
Kentucky got a leadoff infield single by Chris Bisson, but Chris Wade grounded into a 6-4-3 double play.
Going to the second inning: no score.
Live from Cliff Hagan Stadium at the University of Kentucky: South Carolina vs. Kentucky
After splitting a wild Saturday doubleheader, this Southeastern Conference series winds up Sunday. South Carolina won Saturday’s opener 20-19. Kentucky took the nightcap 5-4.
Sunday’s game-time conditions: 38 degrees, a 24 mph wind blowing from right field to left, with light rain.
South Carolina – Jackie Bradley Jr., rf; Whit Merrifield, cf; Nick Ebert, 1b; DeAngelo Mack, lf; Andrew Crisp, 3b; Jeffrey Jones, dh; Justin Dalles, c; Scott Wingo, 2b; Bobby Haney, ss. Pitching: RH Blake Cooper (3-2, 4.74).
Kentucky – Chris Bisson, 2b; Chris Wade, ss; Chris McClendon, 3b; Marcus Nidiffer, c; Gunner Glad, 1b; Braden Kapteyn, dh; Keenan Wiley, cf; Spencer Korus, rf; Chad Wright, lf. Pitching: RH Alex Meyer (1-1, 4.81).