Vanderbilt keeps Kentucky from being outright SEC champion

Published 4:27 pm Monday, May 20, 2024

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Vanderbilt played the role of spoiler on Saturday, defeating No. 2 Kentucky 12-4 at Kentucky Proud Park to keep the Wildcats from becoming outright Southeastern Conference champions.

Kentucky’s bright spots on Saturday included Emilien Pitre reaching base safely for the 28th consecutive game and homering for the second time in as many days. Ryan Nicholson clubbed his 17th blast of the season, the third-most in a single-season in the coach Nick Mingione era.

Ryan Waldschmidt finished a scorching weekend 7-for-12 with four extra-base hits and a significant hand in both victories that gave UK its eighth series victory in 10 conference weekends.

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In the SEC tournament next week in Hoover, Ala., the Tennesse Volunteers will be the top seed because of winning the regular-season series with Kentucky. UK opens SEC Tournament play with a bye into the double-elimination portion of the event. It will play Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. ET.

The following week the Cats will likely be hosting a regional and if they advance a super regional in the NCAA tournament.

Kentucky clinched at least a share of the Southeastern Conference baseball title with a 17-7 victory over Vanderbilt on Friday night at Kentucky Proud Park.