Dawgs pull off another sweep

ATHENS - Eleventh-ranked Georgia won its eighth straight Southeastern Conference game Sunday by completing a sweep of ninth-ranked Kentucky, posting a 6-4 victory at Foley Field.

The Bulldogs (23-12 overall) now lead the SEC by three games with a 12-3 league mark, and for the second week in a row, they posted a three-game sweep of the nation's ninth-ranked squad. Last week, Georgia swept then #9 South Carolina at Foley Field. The Wildcats (26-8, 7-8 SEC) had not been swept in the SEC since 2005. The Bulldogs now have played a league-high 20 games against ranked teams and own a 13-7 mark in those contests.  

  In the first, right fielder Sawyer Carroll gave Kentucky a 2-0 lead when he connected for his 10th home run of the year, a two-run blast off junior left-hander Nathan Moreau. Ryan Wilkes was on base after a leadoff walk. The Bulldogs cut the deficit in half in the second. Junior designated hitter Bryce Massanari led off with a base hit and picked up a stolen base to move into scoring position. Three batters later, he scored on a groundout by Matt Cerione. However, Kentucky got the run right back when Wilkes began the third inning with his fifth home run of the season to put the Wildcats in front 3-1.  

  Sophomore left-hander Alex McRee started the fourth inning for the Bulldogs as Moreau was lifted after surrendering three runs on two hits with three walks and three strikeouts. McRee kept the Wildcats off the scoreboard until the fifth when Troy Frazier's sacrifice fly scored Colin Cogwill to make it 4-1. The run snapped Georgia's bullpen streak at 40 consecutive innings in SEC action without allowing an earned run.  

  With two outs in the fifth, Bulldog junior shortstop Gordon Beckham smashed his SEC-leading 15th home run, a two-run shot off the batter's eye in centerfield, to bring the Bulldogs to within one at 4-3. Georgia got a couple more hits to chase Kentucky starter Greg Dombrowkski and UK brought in James Paxton. He struck out freshman Lyle Allen to maintain the one-run advantage. Dombrowski allowed three runs on nine hits through the first 4.2 innings.  Georgia handed the ball to sophomore right-hander Dean Weaver in the sixth after McRee pitched two innings and allowed a run on two hits with two walks and three strikeouts.  

  In the seventh, the Bulldogs pulled ahead 5-4, tying the game on a two-out, wild pitch by Paxton. Georgia had loaded the bases on a one-out single by Matt Olson and then a pair of two-out walks to Rich Poythress and Bryce Massanari. On a 2-2 offering to Lyle Allen, the pitch went to the backstop which allowed Olson to score. Then, Allen reached on an infield single as Poythress scored for Georgia's first lead of the day. The Bulldogs extended their lead in the eighth again after two outs. Peisel was hit by a pitch, Olson singled and then after a wild pitch moved both runners into scoring position, the Wildcats opted to intentionally walk Beckham for the fourth time in the series and his sixth walk overall. With the bases loaded and Trevor Howe on the mound, Poythress drew a walk, bringing home Peisel for a 6-4 lead. Howe bounced back to strike out Massanari.  

  In the ninth, Georgia brought in All-America closer Joshua Fields who notched his 10th save of the year and 33rd of  his career, tying the school record. Fields now shares the mark with former All-America and first round draft pick Cris Carpenter who tallied 33 saves from 1985-87.  

  Weaver tossed three scoreless innings and faced the minimum to even his record at 1-1 while Paxton got the loss to fall to 3-1.  

  "Earlier in the season, we gave some games away and so we told the team to approach today like a one-game series," said Georgia coach David Perno. "We told them to stay sharp, locked in and finish the series, and they were able to do that even though we fell behind early. Our pitching came through today, our bullpen came in and got the job done again. They have been too good for us not to go to them early on Sunday, and I know that's tough on Nathan (Moreau). We only walked one through the first two games, and he walked the leadoff guy a couple of times. I'm proud of the way the team responded today in the comeback and getting 13 hits and producing with two outs."

  Georgia returns to action Tuesday when it plays East Tennessee State at 5 p.m.

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