March 28, 2013
Georgia (9-17, 0-6 SEC) arrives in Lexington after splitting a midweek series with Clemson where the road team notched a win both nights. Up next, Georgia faces No. 8 Kentucky (19-5, 4-2 SEC) starting Friday at 6:30 p.m. Saturday's game begins at 2 p.m. with the series concluding Sunday with a 1 p.m. start.
Georgia, under the direction of David Perno, is batting .282 with a 4.80 ERA and a sterling .976 fielding percentage. In SEC games, Georgia is hitting .236 with a 4.47 ERA and a .970 fielding percentage. In the all-time series history with Kentucky dating back to 1950, Georgia leads 116-82-1. UK has won the last two series, 2-1. Last year in Athens, Georgia won game one 7-6 and then UK took the next two, 9-8 and 11-2.
Clemson Recap: For the Bulldogs, they posted a 5-3 win on Wednesday that snapped a nine-game losing streak. A day earlier in Athens, the Tigers beat the Bulldogs 9-1. In the victory in front of a crowd of more than 5,100 in Clemson, Georgia hit three home runs including one from outfielder/closer Jared Walsh. It marked the second time this year that he has hit a home run and collected a save in the same game. He did it in the season-opening road win over Ga. Southern. Sophomore OF Hunter Cole had a solid series versus the Tigers, going 5-for-9 with a home run and two RBI from the No. 2 spot in the order. He had batted cleanup 23 times this season and in the No. 3 spot once.
Bulldog Rotation: Freshman RHP Sean McLaughlin has the best ERA on the club at 2.81 in six starts, going 3-2. He has served as the Friday night starter all season and is 0-2 with a 4.50 ERA in SEC play. Redshirt junior LHP Patrick Boling (1-3, 3.93 ERA), who goes on Saturdays, is one of the top strikeout pitchers in the SEC this season, tallying 40 in 36.2 innings. Senior RHP Bryan Benzor (1-1, 5.57 ERA) made his first career start this past Sunday after 51 relief appearances in his three seasons as a Bulldog. He went a career-long four innings and allowed one run in a 3-0 loss to Alabama.
*Sophomores Jarrett Brown (0-0, 2.57 ERA) and Ross Ripple (1-0, 1.47 ERA) have a team-best 13 appearances out of the bullpen. Georgia aims to get senior LHP Blake Dieterich (1-0, 1.47 ERA, 1 SV) back for the UK series. He has been out with shoulder stiffness since March 15.
*Senior shortstop Kyle Farmer (.340-1-28) saw a 10-game hitting streak snap Tuesday versus Clemson after going 0-for-4 but then bounced back to hit a two-run home run in Wednesday's road win . He ranks among the SEC leaders in RBI (28) and doubles (10) while fielding .976.
*Senior third baseman Curt Powell is batting a team-best .374 overall including .364 in SEC action. Powell, who has started all 26 games, has a hit in 19 of the past 22 contests. Powell has had the longest hitting streak this year at 13 games. Sophomore second baseman Nelson Ward ranks second on the club with a .360 batting average.
A Little About Kentucky
The eighth-ranked Wildcats (19-5, 4-2 SEC), led by coach Gary Henderson, are batting .292 with an impressive 2.52 ERA and a .971 Fielding Percentage. In SEC games, the Wildcats are batting .249 with a 2.21 ERA and a .952 fielding percentage. This year, they have won a road series at Florida (2-1) and a home series (2-1) against #14 Miss. State.
The Wildcats feature an all left-handed starting rotation that is a combined 10-4 with a 2.47 ERA. Friday starter sophomore A.J. Reed is a two-way standout, batting .341-6-28 and is 2-3 with a 2.94 ERA. The Saturday starter is senior Jerad Grundy who is 5-1, 1.99 ERA while Sunday's starter is junior Cory Littrell (3-0, 2.56 ERA). Junior closer Trevor Gott (2-0, 0.73 ERA) is 7-for-7 in save chances. Along with Reed, the offense is paced by junior second baseman J.T. Riddle (.252-1-17) and sophomore outfielder Austin Cousino (.286-4-16).
UGA Stats Link
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Play-by-Play: David Johnston
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