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    SEC Baseball Saturday Scoreboard

    Kentucky 8, LSU 1
    Alabama 8, Vanderbilt 6
    South Carolina 5, Auburn 3
    Mississippi State 3, Tennessee 2 (14 Innings)
    Georgia 5, Florida 3
    Ole Miss 8, Arkansas 1
    Ole Miss 1, Arkansas 0


    LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Behind home runs from Austin Cousino and Luke Maile and a quality start from Jerad Grundy, No. 2 Kentucky posted an 8-1 win over No. 1 LSU to even the series, snapping LSU’s league leading eight-game winning streak and forcing a rubber match in the finale, on an overcast Saturday afternoon in front of 2,625 at Cliff Hagan Stadium.

    After dropping the opener of a Southeastern Conference series for the third time in its last four weekends, the Wildcats responded with a resounding 8-1 win to even the series and force a rubber match on Sunday. UK has posted rubber-match wins in four consecutive series finales, including road finale wins at Tennessee, No. 18 Georgia and No. 9 Arkansas, in addition to a home finale win over No. 10 Ole Miss.

    The Wildcats fell behind in an early 1-0 hole as the Tigers plated a run in the top of the first inning. UK immediately responded with two runs in the bottom of the frame and controlled the contest throughout, adding a four-run fourth inning and two insurance runs in the seventh.

    Kentucky (34-6, 12-5 SEC) continued to put up double-digit hits against one of the top pitching staffs in college baseball, as UK mounted 11 hits off the Tigers on Saturday and 10 hits off LSU on Friday, with the Tigers entering the weekend ranked second in the SEC in team ERA. UK belted two home runs in the win Saturday, with Cousino and Maile contributing clutch homers.

    Cousino and Maile led UK offensively with three RBI each, with Cousino batting 2-for-5 with two runs scored, his SEC-leading 16th double of the year and his SEC-freshmen leading seventh homer of the campaign. Maile hit his SEC-best 11th homer of the year, going 2-for-3 with three RBI. Thomas McCarthy added two hits with two runs scored, with senior Michael Williams also adding two hits and an RBI. The Wildcats also got hits from Cameron Flynn, Zac Zellers and Matt Reida, with J.T. Riddle scoring a run and A.J. Reed drawing a walk.

    A junior southpaw, Grundy bounced back with a quality outing after not making it through the fifth inning in his four previous starts. The native of Johnsburg, Ill., was tremendous in his third quality start of the year, tossing six innings, allowing six hits and one run, walking three and striking out three.

    Senior Alex Phillips took over for Grundy with a runner and no outs in the seventh, working the final three innings for his third save of the year, keeping the UK bullpen intact for Sunday. On the weekend, UK has used only two relievers, Phillips and freshman Chandler Shepherd, with the duo combining for 6.2 shutout innings. The UK bullpen is currently riding a stretch of 19 consecutive shutout innings over its last five games, dating back to a Friday-night loss at No. 9 Arkansas.

    The UK win puts the Wildcats back in a tie with LSU for the league lead, with the two teams owning 12-5 records in league play. UK’s start to a season and its 12-5 record in league play is its best in program history, with the Wildcats boasting a 10-5 record against teams ranked in the top-25. UK’s win over No. 1 LSU snapped the Tigers eight-game winning streak and gave UK its first win over a No. 1-ranked foe since Alex Meyer hurled a complete-game shutout win over No. 1 Vanderbilt in 2011 at Cliff Hagan Stadium.

    LSU (32-8, 12-5 SEC) starter Ryan Eades (5-2) suffered the loss, as the sophomore right-hander allowed nine UK hits and six runs in 3.1 innings. Eades entered the start sporting a LSU-leading 2.51 ERA, allowing only 49 hits in 57.1 innings and holding opponents to a .236 average. UK’s SEC-leading offense continued to pound out hits against the potent LSU pitching unit, chasing Eades in the fourth inning, a game after getting 10 hits off LSU ace Kevin Gausman. LSU used Brent Bonvillain after Eades, with Bonvillain working 3.2 innings, allowing two hits and two runs, striking out three. Kevin Berry tossed a shutout eighth inning for the Tigers.

    The series will conclude on Sunday at 1 p.m. ET at Cliff Hagan Stadium, with UK looking to win its sixth consecutive conference series to open the year. The game will be broadcast live on the UK IMG Radio Network, with Neil Price voicing the action. Fans in Lexington can hear the game live on WLAP 630-AM, in Louisville on WKJK 1080-AM and online at UK will send sophomore southpaw Corey Littrell (6-0, 1.95 ERA) to the mound in the rubber match to face off with one of the top freshmen pitchers in college baseball, righty Aaron Nola (5-1, 3.15 ERA).

    For a second straight day, LSU got started early as Arby Fields led off LSU with a single up the middle. Tyler Hanover laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance Fields to second with one out. After a strikeout to force two outs, Raph Rhymes hit a double to leftfield, just out of the reach of Zellers, to score Fields and give LSU a 1-0 lead in the top of the first.

    Kentucky didn’t back down from LSU’s quick start as Cousino led off the bottom half of the inning with a double to leftfield and advanced to third on a wild pitch. McCarthy and Reed each walked to load the bases with no outs. Maile crushed a sacrifice fly to the warning track in leftfield that scored Cousino and advanced McCarthy to third. Flynn hit a single to shallow center, scoring McCarthy and moving Reed to second with one out. The Wildcats left the first inning with a 2-1 lead.

    Kentucky added on to its lead in the bottom of the fourth after Zellers led off with a single up the middle. Riddle was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second with no outs. Williams singled through the right side to score Zellers and extend Kentucky’s lead to 3-1. With one out and runners on first and second, Cousino blasted a three run home run to the deck in right center. Kentucky left the fourth with a 6-1 lead.

    The Wildcats added to their in the bottom of the eighth, started by a single to rightfield from McCarthy. With one out, Maile drilled an opposite-field homer over the rightfield fence. The two-run blast scored McCarthy and extended the Wildcats’ lead to 8-1.


    Austen Smith Delivers 3-Run Walk-off Home Run in 8-6 Win over Vanderbilt

    TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – Alabama used a four-run ninth inning, capped by Austen Smith’s two-out, three-run home run to earn a dramatic 8-6 victory over the Vanderbilt Commodores on Saturday at Sewell-Thomas Stadium. With the win the Crimson Tide improves to 16-24 and 6-11 in Southeastern Conference play, while the Commodores fall to 17-22 and 6-11 in the SEC.

    Smith’s home run, his first of the 2012 season, marks the third consecutive SEC home Saturday game at Sewell-Thomas Stadium in which Alabama has won with a walk-off home run. Smith, who had not homered since the opening game of the NCAA Regional versus Central Florida on June 3, 2011, took a 1-1 pitch over the wall in left to give the Tide the thrilling, come-from-behind victory.

    “With this being our third Saturday (at home) in a row with a walk-off homer, something I don’t think I’ve seen in 24 years of coaching, this is certainly a win we’ll take,” UA head coach Mitch Gaspard said.

    Brett Booth’s two-run walk-off effort on March 24 earned the Tide a 3-2 victory over Mississippi, while Taylor Dugas’ two-run walk-off home run on April 7 versus Auburn gave Alabama a 4-3 win.

    James Tullidge led off the ninth with an infield single, before advancing to third on a single by Dugas. With runners at the corners and no outs, Hunter Gregory’s sacrifice fly to deep left field allowed Tullidge to score, plating the first run of the inning. After an out and a walk, Smith sent the fans at Sewell-Thomas Stadium into a frenzy with his two-out, game-winning dinger, the first walk-off hit of his UA career.

    Smith was 2-for-5 with three RBI and one run scored. Ben Moore registered a 3-for-4, two run, one RBI performance, that included a two-out walk in the ninth right before Smith’s game-winner. Gregory, Jared Reaves and Dugas all contributed one run and one hit on the afternoon as well, with Tullidge adding a hit and two runs.

    Reliever Trey Pilkington (2-3) earned the victory for Alabama, pitching 2.0 innings of relief, allowing one run on two hits. Tide starter Taylor Guilbeau lasted 6.0 innings, giving up two runs on just one hit while striking out a career-high seven. Will Clinard took the loss for Vandy, surrendering four runs on three hits, including Smith’s game-winning, walk-off home run, in the ninth.

    “I thought Taylor Guilbeau gave us his best start of the year through his six innings,” Gaspard said. “We kind of ran into a little trouble there in the seventh inning, we threw a lot of pitches, but we were able to minimize the damage. The walks bit us again in the back end of the game; we walked too many guys and gave up the lead. I thought that Pilkington was serviceable in the back end of the game; he did a good job in the eighth and kept the game close in the ninth. That really set the stage for another good job by our offense in the ninth inning, when our guys just continued to battle. It took a lot of quality at-bats to get Austen Smith to that situation where he could get his home run.”

    Alabama jumped on top of the Commodores in the first frame for the second consecutive day, plating a run in the bottom half of the inning. Gregory scored from third on a wild pitch by Vanderbilt starter Tyler Beede to give the Tide the early lead.

    The Commodores tied it at 1-1 in the top of the fourth inning on Anthony Gomez’s RBI-double, then took a 2-1 lead in the top of the sixth, scoring on a two-out passed ball. Guilbeau avoided further damage in the sixth, striking out Conner Harell to end the inning with two runners aboard.

    Alabama answered with a pair of runs in the bottom of the inning to take a 3-2 lead. Reaves led off with a walk, before coming all the way around to score on Moore’s RBI double, tying the game at 2-2. From there, Moore advanced to third on a fielder’s choice then scored on a Booth sacrifice fly.

    The lead was brief, as Vanderbilt plated three runs in the top of the seventh to reclaim the advantage. The Commodores scored their first run of the inning on a bases-loaded walk, before a two-RBI single by Spencer Navin pushed the Vandy lead to 5-3.

    Alabama struck back with a run in the bottom half of the inning on Reaves’ two-out RBI single, scoring Tullidge from second base to cut the score to 5-4 before the ninth inning dramatics.

    Alabama will try to complete its second SEC series sweep of the season in game three of the series versus the Commodores, slated for Sunday at 1:05 p.m. from Sewell-Thomas Stadium. The Tide is expected to start freshman left-hander Jon Keller (1-2, 4.19) while Vanderbilt will counter with sophomore lefty Kevin Ziomek (3-6, 4.91).



    Auburn, Ala. – A two-run triple by Christian Walker followed by a two-run homer off the bat of LB Dantzler highlighted a four-run sixth inning as eighth ranked South Carolina held on for a 5-3 victory over Auburn on Saturday afternoon to clinch a weekend SEC series.  The Gamecocks are 29-11 and 10-7 in the SEC and have won four straight conference series.  The series victory is also the 13th consecutive series victory over the Tigers.  Auburn drops to 21-18 and 7-10 in league play.  Sunday’s series finale is scheduled for 2 p.m. ET.  It can be heard on the Gamecock Radio Network from IMG College with Andy Demetra and Tommy Moody on the call.  Live audio broadcast is also available at

    With a 1-0 deficit entering the top of the sixth inning, the Gamecocks made their move as Chase Vergason drew a leadoff walk after reaching a full count against Auburn starter Jon Luke Jacobs.  It was Jacobs’ first walk of the game.  After a sacrifice bunt from Joey Pankake, the Gamecocks put another runner on base as Evan Marzilli also walked after working to a full count.  That set the stage for Christian Walker, who launched a 2-1 pitch into right-center that sailed by a diving attempt by Auburn center fielder Ryan Tella.  Walker tripled on the play scoring both runners to give the Gamecocks a one-run lead.  LB Dantzler got ahead 3-1 on Jacobs and launched a two-run homer that stayed just fair of the foul pole in right field for a two-run homer increasing the Carolina lead to 4-1.  The home run was Dantzler’s sixth of the season.

    Auburn threatened in the bottom half of the sixth and scored a single run on a pinch-hit RBI base hit off the bat of Kody Ortman.  With the bases loaded and two outs, Gamecock reliever Tyler Webb worked out of a jam as he struck out Jay Gonzalez to end the inning.  Auburn crept to within one run in the bottom of the eighth on a solo home run from Garrett Cooper, his second homer of the series and fourth of the season.

    The Gamecocks received some insurance in the ninth inning with an unearned run against the Tigers to extend the advantage back to a pair of runs.  Pinch hitter Kyle Martin led off with a walk.  After a sacrifice bunt from Adam Matthews moved pinch runner TJ Costen into scoring position, the Gamecocks tallied the fifth run on a fielding error by Auburn shortstop Dan Glevenyak.  A grounder off the bat of Tanner English was misplayed by Glevenyak and Costen hustled home all the way from second base to give the Gamecocks a 5-3 lead.  Junior right-hander Matt Price worked a perfect ninth inning with a popup and two flyouts sealing Carolina’s victory.

    Freshman left-hander Jordan Montgomery earned the win and improved to 4-0 for the year.  He allowed two runs on six hits in 5.1 innings with one walk and one strikeout.  Webb worked 1.2 scoreless innings of key relief and Price closed it out allowing one run on one hit in two innings of work with no walks and two strikeouts for his fourth save of the season.  Price made his 87th career appearance and is one shy of the school record of 88 held by Rob Mosser (1990-93).  Auburn starter Jon Luke Jacobs suffered the loss, his first of the season.  He is 5-1 on the year.  He allowed four runs on three hits in six-plus innings with two walks and three strikeouts.

    Both Montgomery and Jacobs were stellar in the early innings as neither team could muster much offense.  It would be the Tigers that would break through first, scoring a run in the bottom of the fifth inning to go ahead 1-0.  Creede Simpson singled to open the frame and after a sacrifice bunt, scored on Blake Austin’s RBI single off the 30-foot wall in left field.  Gamecock left fielder Tanner English had a key play on the single though as he relayed a bullet of a throw to Chase Vergason at second base and Austin was nabbed attempting to stretch his hit into a double.

    South Carolina won despite being out-hit 9-5 by the Tigers.  Walker was 3-for-4 with a single, double and triple as well as a run scored and two RBI.  Austin led the Tigers with a 3-for-3 day at the plate.



    STARKVILLE, Miss. – A wild baseball weekend on the Mississippi State campus ended on a wild pitch.
    Matthew Britton sprinted home with the game-winning run on a wild pitch as the Bulldogs held off the Tennessee Volunteers 3-2 in a 14-inning thriller, which put a cap on the baseball portion of Super Bulldog Weekend.
    MSU completed its first three-game conference series sweep of the season before a cowbell-clanging crowd of 9,233 at Dudy Noble Field. The Bulldogs have taken three straight series from the Volunteers and have also won the last eight meetings.
    The Bulldogs improved to 24-16 overall and 8-10 in league play, while the Volunteers feel to 22-18 and 7-11. MSU has won three of its last four home games in walk-off fashion. After playing 11 innings Thursday night, MSU and UT decided to go even longer Saturday and wound up playing the longest game in 77 career meetings. MSU is now an amazing 6-1 all-time in extra innings against UT.
    “We have been needing a weekend like this,” said Britton, the MSU second baseman. “This team has played hard all year. Sometimes, the breaks have not gone our ways. However, we have stayed confident. We believe in each other and we keep working hard. That hard work paid off this weekend. We have four series left and we have to keep this momentum up.”
    MSU pitching turned in a masterful performance the entire weekend. In 34 innings of work, the Bulldog hurlers allowed 20 hits and four earned runs for a 1.02 earned run average. Nine pitchers combined to strike out 27 batters and walk only eight.
    “I really can’t say enough about our pitching staff this weekend,” MSU head coach John Cohen said. “They did an amazing job of competing their tails off. The pitchers commanded the strike zone and didn’t back down from the challenge.”
    For MSU, Evan Mitchell drew his second pitching start this season. Ross Mitchell worked the Bulldogs out of a tight spot in the fourth inning and was lifted during a similar situation in the sixth inning. Jonathan Holder and Taylor Stark followed, before giving way to Caleb Reed.
    Reed worked around two hits and one walk in 3.1 innings of shutout work. Tennessee’s inability to bunt effectively, as well as two players being retired at the plate proved critical. Ben Bracewell worked MSU out of a tight spot in the 11th inning, before Luis Pollorena (2-0) threw three innings of shutout relief to garner the win.
    Down 2-0, the Bulldogs pulled even in the sixth inning on a two-run single by Britton. The true freshman was on his way to his best day in the Maroon and White. Britton had three hits, reached on a walk and played errorless defense with seven attempts in the field.
    “It was good to have an opportunity to help my team,” Britton said. “We play a lot of close games so you have to stay ready. You never know when your at-bat is going to be the big one in the game.”
    Britton walked and was stranded at second base in the ninth inning. In the 11th inning, MSU had runners at first and third but could not bring home the game-winner.
    Tennessee closer Nick Blount (2-3) entered and a got a double play ball to snuff the Bulldogs in the 10th inning. After working around the tight spot in the 11th, Blount overcame a leadoff single in the 12th inning before posting six straight outs.
    Things changed in the 14th inning when Britton started things with an infield hit. Sam Frost advanced Britton on a bunt. After Adam Frazier drew an intentional walk, Mitch Slauter hit a ground ball which resulted in no outs when the UT shortstop hit a base runner with his throw to third base.
    Britton scored one pitch later with the game-winner.
    MSU finished with eight hits, including a multi-hit game by C.T. Bradford.
    Tennessee finished with 11 hits, including multi-hits by Davis Morgan, Jared Allen and Parker Wormsley. Starting pitcher Nick Williams allowed five hits and two runs (both earned) in six innings of work. Drew Steckenrider followed before giving way to Blount with one out in the 10th inning.


    Georgia Bounces Back To Beat No. 1 Florida
    GAINESVILLE, FLA.-----Senior right-hander Michael Palazzone led Georgia to a 5-3 win over top-ranked Florida Saturday in front of 4,458 fans at McKethan Stadium.

    The Bulldogs (24-16, 8-9) bounced back from Friday’s 16-inning heartbreaking defeat to even the SEC series with the Gators who fell to 30-9 overall and 10-7 SEC. Palazzone (2-5) moved in to a tie for ninth place in school history by notching his 19th career win. He went eight innings and allowed three runs on six hits with one walk and six strikeouts.

    The Bulldogs struck for a run in the first off left-hander Brian Johnson. Sophomore Conor Welton lined a one-out single to left. Shortstop Kyle Farmer collected his SEC-leading 16th double to bring in Welton and then took third on an error by centerfielder Daniel Pigott. Florida brought the infield in and

    Johnson got designated hitter Brett DeLoach to bounce out to short to keep Farmer at third. Then, senior Levi Hyams smacked one that appeared to be headed to centerfield but freshman second baseman Casey Turgeon displayed great range and made a strong throw to retire Hyams and keep it 1-0. The lead was short-lived. With two outs in the bottom of the first, catcher Mike Zunino drew a walk and then right fielder Preston Tucker smashed a two-run blast, his 10th of the year, to put the Gators in front 2-1.

    Georgia reclaimed a 4-2 advantage in the third with a two-out rally, scoring three runs on four hits. A fielder’s choice gave Farmer his second RBI while Hyams added a two-run single to cap the outburst. Florida cut it to 4-3 in the fourth on a solo home run by Pigott, his fourth of the year.

    Johnson (5-2) gave the Gators seven innings in the loss, allowing four runs on seven hits with no walks and five strikeouts . Florida turned to Johnny Magliozzi to start the eighth. In the ninth, pinch-hitter Nelson Ward reached on a two-out single. Then, junior Curt Powell made it 5-3 with an RBI-double.

    Four of Georgia’s five runs on the night came with two outs.

    In the ninth, Georgia looked to junior closer Blake Dieterich and he registered his seventh save with a perfect frame.

    “We showed some real grit and toughness that you have to have to do something late in the season,” said Georgia coach David Perno. “We rallied and found a way to win. Michael (Palazzone) was outstanding in giving us another fine start; the defense was solid too, and we had some good at bats. That’s what it’s going to take, and I was pleased to see that after such a tough loss Friday.”


    OXFORD, Miss. – The Rebel offense carried things in the first game before the pitching staff held things down in the second as No. 22 Ole Miss (27-12, 9-8 SEC) took a pair of games from No. 15 Arkansas (27-12, 8-9 SEC) on Saturday to clinch the weekend series.

    After having game one suspended in the fourth inning on Friday night due to inclement weather, the two teams came out and finished off game one before playing the regularly scheduled Saturday game at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field.

    Ole Miss took the first game 8-2 behind the solid hitting of Alex Yarbrough (4-for-5, three RBI) and Matt Snyder (2-for-4, three RBI, two home runs) as the Rebels pounded out 14 hits. Ole Miss then had Mike Mayers and R.J. Hively combine for a two-hit shutout of Arkansas in game two to clinch the series.

    The 1-0 victory in game two was the first for Ole Miss since a 1-0 shutout of Mississippi State on April 11, 2006 in the Mayor’s Trophy game in Jackson. It also marked the first 1-0 loss for Arkansas since May 7, 2004 when Ole Miss accomplished the feat in the series opener in Oxford.
    “In general it was just a great day,” said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. “It was a great job by us coming out to finish the first game. Ryne Stanek was so good, but I thought Mayers matched him pitch-for-pitch. It could not have worked out any better putting RJ Hively in the bullpen and him performing the way he did. He came in that tough situation and pitched well.  He used the fans to his advantage.  We have what has to be one of the best atmospheres in the country and that was to his advantage in the last couple innings.”

    The Rebels and Razorbacks will take the field at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday to close out the series. Ole Miss will send freshman right-hander Sam Smith to the mound, while Arkansas will send junior right-hander D.J. Baxendale to the mound.

    The game will be televised by Cox Sports.

    GAME 1: Ole Miss 8, Arkansas 2

    Ole Miss got off to a quick start in Friday night’s game, using a two-run home run from Matt Snyder in the first inning to get on the board. Alex Yarbrough scored on the play after reaching on a sharply hit single to third before scoring on the Snyder hit.

    Arkansas cut into the lead with a lead-off home run from Sam Bates in the second inning, but Rebel starter Bobby Wahl struck out the next three batters to end the inning.

    Ole Miss added three more runs in the bottom half of the second. A walk of Auston Bousfield and a single from Andrew Mistone put men at the corners before Tanner Mathis singled up the middle to bring the first run home. Yarbrough then came up with a two-out double to drive in both Mistone and Mathis and the Rebels held a 5-1 lead after two innings.

    An RBI single from Zach Kirksey in the third inning put Ole Miss on top 6-1 before the rain would come in the fourth inning and force the suspension of the game.

    The Rebels sent Aaron Greenwod to the mound at the start of the day on Saturday to resume the first game of the series. The right-hander took the mound with two outs and a man on first and a 3-1 count on Arkansas’ Jake Wise. He struck out the batter to end the inning and kept momentum on the side of the home team.

    Greenwood (1-0) picked up the win, working 2.2 innings and allowing one run on three hits with four strikeouts. He was one of four pitchers the Rebels would use to close out the first game of the day.

    Brandon Moore (3-1) suffered the loss for Arkansas, allowing six runs on seven hits with a walk and a strikeout in 2.1 innings of work. Randall Fant closed out the game for the Razorbacks after entering the game in the third inning on Friday night and taking the mound again on Saturday.

    Ole Miss continued to build on the lead in the resumed game, using a solo home run from Snyder to extend the lead to 7-1 in the fifth inning.

    Arkansas cut back into the lead with a solo shot from Jimmy Bosco in the sixth to cut it back to 7-2.

    The Rebels would tack on one more run in the bottom of the sixth when Austin Anderson scored from first on a double down the left field line from Yarbrough. Anderson reached on a single before his run would put the score at the 8-2 final margin of victory.

    GAME TWO: Ole Miss 1, Arkansas 0

    In a contrast of styles, it was a pitcher’s duel in game two after the offensive output and big hits from both teams in game one.

    Mayers (4-2) picked up the win as he worked 6.1 innings and allowed only two hits with two walks and four strikeouts in his time on the mound. Hively then picked up his first save, closing out the final 2.2 innings without allowing a hit as he tallied three strikeouts to only one walk.

    Ryne Stanek (6-2) suffered the loss for Arkansas, allowing the game’s only run on five hits with two strikeouts in 6.1 innings of work.

    Ole Miss pushed its only run across in the sixth inning when Andrew Mistone scored on a Yarbrough single to left with two outs. Mistone opened the inning with a single before the Rebels would use back-to-back sac bunts to push him to third base to set up the score on the Yarbrough hit.

    It would prove to be all the Rebels would need as Hively and the Rebels defense held Arkansas off the board the rest of the way. Ole Miss turned a pair of double plays in the third and seventh innings and came up with a big groundout to short with a man on third in the eighth inning to preserve the shutout win.