GREENVILLE, S.C. - Sawyer Carroll, Sean Coughlin, and Ryan Wilkes drove in two runs apiece, as the No. 26 Kentucky baseball team put the finishing touches on a sweep of the Furman Paladins with a 13-4 win on a beautiful Sunday afternoon at Furman Stadium.
Kentucky (3-0) got the scoring started in the top of the first, beginning with an Antone DeJesus lead-off single. Jason Kipnis got hit by his third pitch of the young season and Carroll was issued a walk to load the bases. Billy Grace worked the count full and walked in DeJesus for the Wildcats first run of the afternoon. Coughlin grounded into a double play to bring home UK's second run and give the Wildcats an early 2-0 lead.
Kentucky ace hurler Greg Dombrowski earned the win, going six innings and forcing the Paladins into 14 ground outs, while striking out. Furman right-hander Mason Smith took the loss, allowing five runs in 5.2 innings of action.
In the fourth, Furman pushed across two runs to tie the game courtesy of a Tony Macccani home run. Paladin second basemen Joe Daysh reached on an infield single, setting the stage for the Furman catcher's home run to left field, noting the game at 2.
Kentucky took the lead during a two-out rally in the top of the sixth. A Grace walk and a single from Coughlin set the stage for a Matt McKinney RBI single. McKinney advanced into scoring position and came home for the Wildcats on a Wilkes RBI single to stretch the UK lead to 5-2.
UK loaded the bases in the seventh and plated five runs, beginning with two hit batters, Spear and Mike Brown. A DeJesus bunt single loaded the bases, setting the stage for Carroll to drive in two with a double to right center. The inning was not over however, as UK Player of the Year candidate Sean Coughlin ripped a two-run home run sky rocketing over the left-field fence to give UK a 10-2 advantage.
Furman (0-3) narrowed the Wildcat lead in the seventh, as Furman leadoff hitter Joey Rodgers reached on a fielding error and scored on a RBI single from N.C. State transfer Bobby Hubbard.
The Wildcat offensive explosion was not finished as Wilkes reached third by virtue of a fielding error on Furman right-fielder Jay Jackson. The next batter, Spear plated Wilkes with a double to left center. Spear would score on a DeJesus sacrifice fly for a 12-3 lead.
Furman pushed across one more run in the eighth, as Joe Daysh reached on a lead-off double down the left-field line. Spence Gibbs drove in Daysh for the Paladin's fourth run of the game.
Brock Wright pinch hit for Carroll and led off the ninth inning with a home run to left field for the final margin, 13-4.
Scott Green came on in relief of Dombrowski, hurling two innings. The 6-foot-8, 240 pound right-hander saw his first action in over a year after redshirting the 2006 Southeastern Conference Championship season due to injury. UK freshman Tyler Henry, named one of the top 50 freshmen in college baseball by Baseball America, finished off the game, tossing the final inning of the contest.
Kentucky returns home on Wednesday for its home opener against in-state rival Murray State. Game time is set for 4 p.m. ET at Cliff Hagan Stadium.
Carroll, Coughlin Blast UK to Sweep of Furman
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