Junior left-hander Corey Littrell held Florida to one run over eight innings and Micheal Thomas hit a three-run homer to power no. 9 Kentucky to a 6-2 win over Florida on Sunday in Gainesville.
Kentucky (16-2, 2-1 SEC) claimed its first series win at Florida in the last 15 years and just the fourth in program history. The other three came in 1973, 1975 and and 1999.
Littrell (3-0) turned in his fourth quality start of the season, scattering 10 singles over eight innings, walking none, and striking out seven. It marked the Louisville native's 18th career win with the Cats. He is now 7-0 with a 1.92 ERA in nine starts in series-deciding games the last two seasons.
Trevor Gott came on to record the final three outs of the game for UK.
The Cats got two-hit games from Austin Cousino, A.J. Reed, J.T. Riddle and Matt Reida as part of a 12-hit day.
Florida (9-11, 1-2 SEC) sent Eric Handhold to the mound in the rubber match. The Gator starter worked 3.2 innings, allowing five runs on 10 hits and a walk.
Thomas staked UK to a lead against Handhold (0-1) in the second inning with a three-run blast over the stands in left field following a walk to Jeff Boehm and a single by Kyle Barrett. It marked the junior catcher's first homer of the season and only the second of his career.
The Cats plated another run in the third inning on a Boehm double to score Riddle, who had singled, from first base.
Kentucky stretched the lead to 5-0 in the fourth on a lead-off double by Reida and an RBI single by Zellers.
Florida got on the board in the bottom of the fifth on four singles against Littrell, who got a key double play to help escape bigger damage.
The Cats added an insurance run in the eighth on a lead-off walk by Barrett, a sacrifice bunt by Thomas and an RBI single by Reida to make it 6-1.
Florida got a run in the ninth for the final margin. Cody Dent singled with one out and scored on Justin Shafer's two-out RBI single.
• J.T. Riddle made his team-leading 85th consecutive start.
• Austin Cousino stole his eighth base in eight attempts in the second.
• Corey Littrell picked off his third runner of the year and the 14th of his career.
• Micheal Thomas was hit by his team-high ninth pitch of the year.
• With 18 career wins, Littrell moved into a tie for ninth place in UK career history.
Littrell shuts down Gators in series-clincher
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