Down to the gun: Cats must sweep Florida

It's down to this--any combination of two Kentucky losses or two Vanderbilt wins eliminates the Wildcats from the SEC tournament. Although Kentucky is only 1.5 games behind Vanderbilt, and would win any tiebreaker, the uneven number of games will prevent a tie from occurring.

Kentucky (27-24, 11-16 SEC) sits 1.5 games out of the SEC Tournament entering the final weekend, just behind eighth-place Vanderbilt. The Wildcats travel to Florida for its final three-game series of the season, and entering the final weekend UK remains a game and a half back of the Commodores (12-14 SEC). UK has to win at least two games at Florida to get in and even with at least two wins, Vanderbilt would have to drop all three against Tennessee. If Vanderbilt wins one of the games vs. the Volunteers, UK would have to sweep SEC East Division leader Florida in Gainesville, Fla. The SEC takes the top eight teams – based on winning percentage – to the tournament in Hoover, Ala., held May 20-24 at Regions Park.

The games will span Thursday-Saturday, with first pitch Thursday and Friday slated for 6:30 p.m. ET. Saturday's first pitch has been moved back to 4 p.m. ET, in order to accommodate a 1 p.m. ET NCAA Softball Regional in Gainesville. All three games can be heard live on the Big Blue Sports Network (radio), with the Voice of UK Baseball, Neil Price, calling the action. Fans in Lexington can hear the games live on WLAP 630-AM and in Louisville on WKJK 1080-AM.

UK will send its regular weekend rotation to the mound for the three-game series. Thursday, junior southpaw James Paxton (5-2, 5.30 ERA) gets the start, facing off with senior Florida lefty Stephen Locke (3-1, 5.08 ERA). Friday, UF freshman right-hander Anthony DeScalfani (5-2, 3.81 ERA) gets the call to face off with UK senior lefty Chris Rusin (6-4, 3.96 ERA). In the series finale Saturday, UK freshman Alex Meyer (1-4, 5.27 ERA) will take the hill, with UF yet to announce a starter.

Florida, ranked #11 in the country, recently won a series with LSU last weekend and sits only one game back of the division leaders, so they will have every incentive to play well against the Wildcats.

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