Feb. 22, 2013
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. -- Senior southpaw Jerad Grundy worked seven dominating innings and faced just three hitters over the minimum, leading No. 8 Kentucky to a 6-1 win over Elon, during the second day of the Carravelle Resort Invitational hosted by Coastal Carolina, on a cold and windy Friday afternoon at TicketReturn.com Field at Pelicans Park.
Grundy (2-0) worked seven strong innings, allowing just three hits and two walks, surrendering a run and striking out three. Over his first two starts of 2013, Grundy has worked 13 innings, including his first 12.1 innings without allowing an earned run, posting a 0.69 ERA.
The native of Johnsburg, Ill., faced only three hitters over the minimum, allowing one extra-base hit and getting two great double-play turns from his UK infield. In his two-year UK career, Grundy has an 8-3 record and a 3.38 ERA in 18 starts, holding opponents to a .234 average.
Kentucky (4-1) was led offensively in the win by a five-run fourth inning, later adding a run in the seventh. All-America centerfielder Austin Cousino launched a pair of doubles and stole his fifth base of the year, with Zac Zellers, A.J. Reed, Max Kuhn, J.T. Riddle and Paul McConkey each adding hits. Kuhn hit his second double of the year, with Riddle extending his frolicsome hitting streak to a club-best eight games and adding a steal. Leftfielder Lucas Witt drew a walk and hung a sacrifice fly, with catcher Micheal Thomas also adding a sacrifice fly.
Grundy was replaced to start the eighth by freshman southpaw Ryne Combs, who worked two innings to finish the game, not allowing a baserunner.
Elon (2-3) senior left-handed starter Dylan Clark (1-1) – a 2012 Cape Cod League All-Star – worked six innings, allowing six hits and five runs – four earned, not issuing a walk and striking out seven. Clark finished a strikeout shy of tying his career high, with all of the UK offensive output coming in the fourth inning off the dynamic Phoenix southpaw. Tyler Manez took over in the seventh, working two innings, allowing one hit and one run, walking one and striking out two.
The Wildcats mounted a five-run rally in the fourth inning, breaking up Clark’s perfect game and taking a 5-0 lead. Cousino led off with a double hit to the rightfield wall and Zellers followed with a single into right-centerfield. Reed then smoked a RBI single to rightfield to score Cousino and Kuhn followed with a double over the leftfielder’s head. After a Riddle line out, McConkey singled into centerfield, with the throw from the outfield sailing to the backstop to score Zellers and Reed and move McConkey to third base. Witt then scored McConkey with a sacrifice fly to the rightfield warning track.
Ryan Kinsella got Elon – a team that won 33 games in 2012 – on the board in the top of the seventh, belting a one-out solo homer over the rightfield fence.
In the bottom of the seventh, UK added to its lead with a run for the final margin, 6-1. Witt led off with a four-pitch walk and Matt Reida came to the plate and successfully executed a sacrifice bunt down the third base line, with the speedy Witt motoring from first base to third with just one out. Thomas then hung a sacrifice fly to centerfield to score Witt.
GAME NOTES: Sophomore Max Kuhn made his first career start as the No. 4 hitter and his second career start at first base … J.T. Riddle made his team-leading 71st consecutive start … Lucas Witt hung his second sac fly of the year … Max Kuhn doubled for the second time of 2013 … Austin Cousino launched his first double of the year and the 21st of his two-year career … Cousino has reached base safely in a club-best 11 consecutive games, dating back to 2012 … Riddle extended his hitting streak to a team-leading eight games … Riddle stole his 11th career base and his first of 2013 … Jerad Grundy had his streak of 12.1 consecutive innings without an earned run snapped in the seventh … Matt Reida laid down his 17th career sacrifice bunt … Micheal Thomas notched his second career sac fly in the seventh … Cousino doubled for the second time of the game and year in the seventh … Cousino stole his fifth base of the year … Ryne Combs worked a career-long two frames in relief.