Cats take series from No. 12 Gators

Max Kuhn and A.J. Reed each hit home runs Sunday, powering Kentucky to a 9-8 win over No. 12 Florida and a winning series against the visiting Gators.

Max Kuhn and A.J. Reed each hit home runs Sunday, powering Kentucky to a 9-8 win over No. 12 Florida and a winning series against the visiting Gators.

Kentucky (22-10, 6-6 SEC) trailed 3-2 going to the bottom of the sixth inning before Kuhn belted a go-ahead three-run homer to give the No. 19 Wildcats the lead for good.

Florida (20-12, 7-5 SEC) entered the weekend atop the league standings and sporting a 2.94 team ERA, but the Cats exploded for 36 runs on 50 hits in the series. It marked UK's most runs scored in a series against the Gators in program history.

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"It was an unusual weekend, no doubt about that," UK head coach Gary Henderson said. "… It's great to beat the Gators at home. We're four (SEC) weekends down, 6-6 after playing some tough people. It doesn't get easier for us, but we've had some good people behind us and it's nice to be where we are considering where we were."

Reed, a junior first baseman, went 3-for-4 with his SEC-leading 12th home run of the year. The Perfect Game USA Midseason Player of the Year hit .500 (8-for-16) with three doubles, three homers and six RBI during UK's four games this week. Kuhn, a junior third baseman, went 2-for-5 with his fourth long ball.

UK also got three-hit games from Kyle Barrett and Thomas Bernal, with freshman JaVon Shelby and catcher Micheal Thomas each collecting two hits. Austin Cousino had one hit with a key two-out RBI. Matt Reida and Ka'ai Tom each added one hit.

Kentucky starter Andrew Nelson worked five strong innings, allowing five hits and one walk, striking out one. Nelson was charged with three unearned runs in his five innings, as the UK defense allowed two runs in the third and one run in the fifth on errors.

Lefty Dylan Dwyer (3-1) came on to start the sixth inning, working 2.1 innings, allowing three hits and three runs, walking one and striking out three. Spencer Jack then came on in the eighth to try and get UK out of the jam, getting four outs, allowing three hits and two runs – coming on a three-run homer – striking out two. Sophomore Kyle Cody was called out of the bullpen to face cleanup hitter Taylor Gushue with two outs in the ninth inning, with Cody getting Gushue to ground out to end the game and earn his second save of the year.

Kentucky improved to 7-4 on the season against teams ranked among the Top 25.

The Cats return to action on Tuesday at home against Morehead State. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m. ET.


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