From UK Athletics
Cheek and Martens lead offensive effort in victory
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The 14th-seeded Kentucky softball team staved off a late Illinois rally to hold on for a 4-2 win and advance to a fifth appearance in an NCAA Super Regional. The Wildcats utilized a three-run first inning and added a run in the third for all of the insurance runs they would need to preserve the win.
With the win, Kentucky improves to 39-17 on the year. Illinois’ season ends with a 39-20 overall record. Erin Rethlake picks up the win in the circle for the Cats. The lefty tossed 5.2 innings, giving up five hits and one run and struck out four. Meagan Prince pitched the final 1.1 innings, giving up just two hits. Illinois’ Breanna Wonderly takes the loss after a complete game effort.
UK’s offensive firepower came from the bat of freshman Alex Martens who has bolstered the lineup all weekend. Martens drove in three runs and scored a run of her own in the win. Abbey Cheek was 2-for-4 with a pair of runs scored. Rethlake was the other Wildcat with a pair of hits in a 2-for-3 performance at the dish.
Ruby Rivera and Annie Fleming were both 2-for-3 for the day for the Fighting Illini. Rivera also scored a run, while Fleming drove in a run. The Illini scored two runs over the final two innings to pull to within two with a runner on third before a dribbler up the middle was handled by Prince to preserve the win.
(14) Kentucky Travels West to Play (3) Oregon in Eugene Super Regional
Wildcats play three-game series with winner going to WCWS
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The Kentucky Wildcats will be traveling west to face the third-seeded Oregon Ducks for the NCAA Super Regionals. UK won its regional on Sunday afternoon with a 4-2 win over Illinois – and the Oregon Ducks run-ruled Wisconsin, 9-0 on Sunday.
The Super Regionals will be three games in three days beginning on either Thursday or Friday. The winner of two games will advance to the Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City.
Eugene Super Regional Schedule Announced by NCAA and ESPN
Wildcats open play on Friday night at 7 p.m. ET
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The Eugene Super Regional schedule was announced by the NCAA in conjunction with ESPN on Monday afternoon, with Kentucky slated for a Friday first pitch time of 7 p.m. ET against the Ducks.
Saturday’s game will also be at 7 p.m. ET, with Sunday’s if necessary game slated for a 4 p.m. ET first pitch from Jane Sanders Stadium in Eugene.
Eugene Super Regional Schedule
Jane Sanders Stadium – Eugene, Oregon
Friday, May 26 – (14) Kentucky vs. (3) Oregon – 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT [ESPNU]
Saturday, May 27 – (3) Oregon vs. (14) Kentucky – 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT [ESPN2]
Sunday, May 28 – (14) Kentucky vs. (3) Oregon – 3 p.m. ET/Noon PT [ESPNU]
Tickets are available for all three games through the Oregon Athletics Department.
For the latest on the Kentucky softball team, follow @UKSoftball on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, as well as on the web at UKathletics.com.