LEXINGTON, KY - Despite a five-run first inning, the Buffalo baseball team could not generate enough offense to hold off the Kentucky Wildcats Saturday afternoon, losing 9-5. Tom Murphy had three hits and River McWilliams drove in two runs to lead UB at the plate.
With one out in the first inning, Jon Mestas drew a four-pitch walk and was moved over by a Murphy single that snuck past the shortstop. Alex Baldock flew out right after, but a wild spell by Kentucky starter Jerad Grundy with back-to-back wild pitches moved the two base runners around, scoring Mestas and moving Murphy to third. A walk to freshman Tyler Mautner put two on, and Mike Burke took a first-pitch single to right center field that plated Murphy. Dan Scahill also jumped on Grundy's first offering and smoked a double down the right field line to score Burke easily. River McWilliams had his seeing-eye single pass the shortstop as well to score Scahill and Mautner and move the Bulls ahead 5-0.
Starting pitcher Kevin Hughes was solid through the first three innings and was aided by inning-ending double plays in the first and third innings, but the Wildcats were able to manufacture runs in the fourth and fifth before blowing the game open in the sixth, giving up a solo home run, a two run and a three run home run that put the home team in the driver's seat. The Bulls put runners on second and third in the seventh to try and respond, but Mautner grounded out on a 3-2 pitch that snuffed out the team's best remaining opportunity of the game.
The Bulls will send redshirt senior Jeff Thompson to the mound tomorrow for the final game of the weekend series. He will face Cory Littell at 1 pm tomorrow with the Bulls looking to steal one in the Bluegrass State.