Rebuilding Kentucky knew it had a tough task in visiting No. 17 North Carolina to open the season.
The Tar Heels finished off a three-game sweep of the Wildcats on Sunday, claiming a 5-4 victory in Chapel Hill.
Kentucky got its first home run of the season from junior infielder Riley Mahan, but once again struggled to generate much offense against UNC's talented pitching staff. The Cats managed only eight hits on the day.
Freshman right-hander Luca Dilatri (1-0) earned the win for the Heels, allowing four earned runs over seven innings on the mound. He struck out five and walked two. Josh Hiatt picked up his third save in as many days for UNC, which won three games by a combined total of four runs.
Sophomore right-hander Justin Lewis (0-1), making his first career start for the Cats, took the loss after allowing five earned runs on four hits and three walks in two-plus innings. He served up a pair of home runs to UNC's Logan Warmoth and Tyler Lynn.
Senior left-hander Logan Salow was a bright spot for UK out of the bullpen, tossing five innings of scoreless relief.
* Senior OF Zach Reks was held hitless after starting the season 7-for-8 but still hit .636 with two runs, an RBI, a double, three walks and a stolen base on the weekend.
* Sophomore OF Tristan Pompey had two hits, giving him the eighth multi-hit game of his career.
* Mahan’s two-run homer was the seventh of his career and produced the eighth multi-RBI game of his career.
UK returns to Lexington before traveling to face Liberty University on Wednesday in Lynchburg, Va. First pitch is 3 p.m. and fans can listen on the UK Sports Network via UKathletics.com and iHeart Radio or 98.5 FM in the Lexington area.