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With the game locked in a 1-1 tie in the eighth inning, No. 7 Florida used leadoff triple and a game-winning RBI single from Josh Tobias then added a ninth-inning rally to post a 5-1 series-clinching win versus No. 3 Kentucky.
The loss marked UK’s second series defeat of the year and first at home
UK (36-11, 14-9) has lost its last four games and five of its last six contests. The series loss is UK’s second consecutive, falling at defending SEC Champion Vanderbilt.
The Wildcats mounted eight hits in the game, leaving 10 runners on base. UK got two-hit games from junior first baseman Luke Maile and sophomore designated hitter Paul McConkey, with junior left fielder Zac Zellers, sophomore second baseman J.T. Riddle, senior catcher Michael Williams and sophomore shortstop Matt Reida adding hits.
After both teams plated one run in the first inning, the starting pitchers settled in with scoreless frames until eighth inning.
UK junior left-handed pitcher Jerad Grundy was tagged with the loss after pitching a career-long 7.1 innings while allowing six hits and two runs, walking one and striking out two in his fourth quality start of the year.
Florida (35-12, 14-9 SEC) starter Karsten Whitson, a first-round MLB Draft pick out of high school, worked 4.2 innings, allowing six hits and one run, walking three and striking out two. He was replaced with a runner in scoring position and two outs in the fifth inning by lefty Bobby Poyner. Poyner worked out of the jam, totaling one shutout inning, allowing two hits. Greg Larson (6-0) took over for Poyner with runners on the corners and two outs getting out of the jam to work 1.1 perfect innings for the win. Lefty Steven Rodriguez closed out the game for his second save of the year.