First time in History: UK cracks Top 10

LEXINGTON – The Kentucky baseball team took over sole possession of first place in the Southeastern Conference over the weekend and has been rewarded with a No. 7 national ranking, it was announced Monday.

Entering the week, UK's highest ranking was No. 11 from Baseball America while it was No. 15 in the Collegiate Baseball poll. After sweeping a three-game series from No. 17 Ole Miss, Kentucky jumped up to No. 7 in the Collegiate Baseball poll while moving up to No. 8 according to Baseball America. It is the first time in school history the team has been ranked in the top 10.

The Wildcats have now been ranked for eight straight weeks after not earning a ranking in the five years before the season. Kentucky is 37-11 overall and 16-8 in the Southeastern Conference, which is one game ahead of Alabama for the overall league lead. In the Eastern Division, UK holds a three-game advantage over South Carolina and Georgia.

The first-place standing in the SEC is the first for Kentucky during the second half of the conference schedule since 1988. The Wildcats finished second to Florida that year. The last time UK was ahead in the league standings this late was in 1976 when the team tied Tennessee for the SEC Eastern Division crown.

Kentucky has never won an SEC Championship.

Strieby Named to National Player of the Year Watch List: Kentucky junior Ryan Strieby has been named to another National Player of the Year Watch List, this time for the Brooks Wallace Award, it was announced over the weekend.

The College Baseball Foundation gives out the award and originally released a watch list prior to the start of the season which included UK second baseman John Shelby. However, the list has been revised at midseason to add deserving players before the it is trimmed to a semi-final round on May 21.

Three finalists will be chosen after the NCAA Super Regionals and the Brooks Wallace Award winner will be announced on July 4 in Omaha, Neb.

Earlier in the year, Strieby was one of 64 players named to the watch list for the Dick Howser Trophy, another National Player of the Year award.

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