Sports – The Louisville Cardinal http://www.louisvillecardinal.com U of L's Independent Student Newspaper Thu, 22 Jun 2017 23:20:22 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/media/2016/05/cropped-lc-logo-1-32x32.png Sports – The Louisville Cardinal http://www.louisvillecardinal.com 32 32 Baseball faces TCU in elimination game of College World Series http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/baseball-faces-tcu-elimination-game-college-world-series/ http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/baseball-faces-tcu-elimination-game-college-world-series/#respond Wed, 21 Jun 2017 14:47:55 +0000 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/?p=49042 By Dalton Ray– In baseball’s first College World Series since 2014, the Cardinals opened their Omaha experience with a 8-4 win over Texas A&M — the first ever win for U of L in the CWS. Facing No. 3 seed Florida, Louisville fell 5-2. U of L will play TCU on June 22 at 8 […]

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By Dalton Ray–

In baseball’s first College World Series since 2014, the Cardinals opened their Omaha experience with a 8-4 win over Texas A&M — the first ever win for U of L in the CWS. Facing No. 3 seed Florida, Louisville fell 5-2. U of L will play TCU on June 22 at 8 p.m. in a win-or-go-home game.

The Cardinals used a five-run inning to prevail against the Aggies in their first game. Going up against their second straight SEC team in Florida, the Gators used a pair of home runs to create the difference. A solo shot in the in the third inning and a three-run homer in the fourth inning was all UF needed.

Louisville left seven runners stranded and senior Colin Lyman recorded the only RBI for U of L. Junior Brendan McKay recorded a pair of doubles.

The loss to the Gators places U of L in the elimination bracket. Their opponent in six-seed TCU (48-17) who lost Florida in game one, but eliminated Texas A&M to stay alive.

The Horned Frogs won the Big 12 regular season championship and are led by outfielder Austen Wade and pitcher Brian Howard.

Evan Skoug is tied for 10th in the nation with 20 home runs and Nolan Brown is tied for 11th with 26 stolen bases.

TCU started the season at No. 1 by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper and have stayed in the top 10 all season.

Photo by Dalton Ray / The Louisville Cardinal

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Football position breakdown: Quarterback http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/football-position-breakdown-quarterback/ http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/football-position-breakdown-quarterback/#respond Sun, 18 Jun 2017 14:00:54 +0000 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/?p=49023 By Dalton Ray and Micah Brown — Finishing 2016 with a 9-4 record, football enters their fourth season under coach Bobby Petrino. Dropping the final three games of last season, Louisville looks to rebound in their season opener Sept. 2. The second annual TLC weekly football position breakdown is here. Our staff will take an […]

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By Dalton Ray and Micah Brown —

Finishing 2016 with a 9-4 record, football enters their fourth season under coach Bobby Petrino. Dropping the final three games of last season, Louisville looks to rebound in their season opener Sept. 2.

The second annual TLC weekly football position breakdown is here. Our staff will take an in-depth look at each position group every Sunday, finishing on Aug. 20. Our first group we dive into is the quarterbacks.

Lamar Jackson, junior

2016 stats: (Passing) 230-for-409, 52.6 completion percentage, 3,543 yards, 30 touchdowns and nine interceptions

(Rushing) 260 attempts, 1,571 yards, 6.0 yards per carry and 21 touchdowns

There’s not much to say about Jackson that hasn’t been said. Cardinal fans knew his potential after watching the freshman light up Texas A&M in the Music City Bowl, but calling the dual-threat quarterback a Heisman winner seemed far-fetched. However, Jackson hurdled his way into the Heisman discussion during the 2016 season and silenced many critics.

The Heisman winner showed no signs of slowing down after a five-touchdown performance against then-second-ranked Florida State. Jackson finished the season with an ACC-record for most rushing yards (1,571) and rushing touchdowns (21) by a quarterback.

While it may get lost in his game’s glamour, Jackson must improve in passing decisions, going through progressions and ball security. If he is able to transition to become a pocket-passer, Jackson could be in the discussion for another Heisman trophy.

Jawon Pass, redshirt freshman

2016 stats: N/A

Receiving offers from college football blue-bloods such as Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Ohio State, LSU and Notre Dame, Pass will backup Jackson in 2017. Redshirting as a freshman, Pass ended high school with some impressive rankings, but he is still a raw prospect.

“Puma” Pass had his first chance throwing for a Louisville crowd in the 2017 spring game. He threw an unimpressive four interceptions and missed multiple open throws.

The 6-foot-5, big-armed quarterback will likely see the field only in blowouts this season, but is priming himself for a big 2018.

Sean McCormack, sophomore

2016 stats: N/A

From Hinsdale High School in Illinois, McCormack catapulted from a big senior year into a walk-on spot at U of L. Passing for six touchdowns during the second round of state playoffs as a senior, McCormack ended his final season with 3,041 passing yards and 35 touchdowns.

Clay Bolin, redshirt freshman

2016 stats: N/A

The younger brother of former U of L quarterback Kyle Bolin, Clay Bolin played his freshman season at Morehead State and transferred to Louisville in January of 2017.

At Bourbon County High School, Bolin passed for 3,002 yards and 23 touchdowns in his senior season and owns every passing record at his alma matter. Bolin doesn’t have the biggest frame — 6-foot and 190 pounds  — but has a strong arm and drives the ball into receivers.

Photo by Nancy Hanner / The Louisville Cardinal

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Reassessing the whirlwind of the NCAA punishment on men’s basketball http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/reassessing-whirlwind-ncaa-punishment-mens-basketball/ http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/reassessing-whirlwind-ncaa-punishment-mens-basketball/#respond Thu, 15 Jun 2017 22:55:42 +0000 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/?p=48990 By Dalton Ray–  Ninety minutes after the NCAA’s Committee of Infractions decided on the men’s basketball sex scandal, coach Rick Pitino, Interim President Greg Postel, athletic director Tom Jurich, advisor Chuck Smrt and senior associate AD Kenny Klein addressed a room full of media members in Grawemeyer Hall. Postel started the conference explaining how much U of […]

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By Dalton Ray– 

Ninety minutes after the NCAA’s Committee of Infractions decided on the men’s basketball sex scandal, coach Rick Pitino, Interim President Greg Postel, athletic director Tom Jurich, advisor Chuck Smrt and senior associate AD Kenny Klein addressed a room full of media members in Grawemeyer Hall.

Postel started the conference explaining how much U of L cooperated with the NCAA during the process, saying the university will appeal the NCAA ruling.

Smrt, a former NCAA enforcement staffer for nearly 20 years, has assisted U of L with their ongoing investigation since 2015. Expected to quarterback their process to regain good graces with the NCAA, the legal expert didn’t anticipate this type of punishment.

“The penalties exceeded our expectations … the severity of this penalty, we think, exceeds the severity of this case,” Smrt said.

Fielding the first line of questions, Smrt absorbed all questions about what the NCAA dished out.

“We imposed penalties what we thought were the guidelines directed by the NCAA in this type of case,” Smrt said. “That’s why we imposed a postseason band, obviously which was very significant. We imposed scholarship cuts, which were very significant. The additional penalties imposed by the committee are the ones that surprised us.”

After giving all the legal lingo one could, Smrt dropped the bombshell Louisville fans didn’t want to hear.

“At this time we believe (the vacation of records) could impact 108 regular season games and approximately 15 NCAA wins,” Smrt said.

Of the 15 postseason wins is the 2012 Final Four run and the 2013 national title.

Five minutes into the conference, Pitino made his first statement.

“For 35 years I’ve had a lot of faith in the NCAA and reacted that way accordingly as a head coach with belief in their rules,” Pitino said. “I feel, like everyone else up here, this is unfair, over the top and severe. But personally, I’ve lost a lot of faith in the NCAA.”

Pitino then said he would put his faith in the appeals committee and that U of L will win the process because it’s what is “right and just.”

When asked if Pitino thought this would hurt recruiting, he responded, “We’ve had the best recruiting class (this season) we’ve had in 16 years, and probably a better one next year.”

After Pitino answered questions for about five minutes, reporters asked Smrt for the logistics. Smrt indicated the appeal process would be a “back-and-forth” situation which will last around three months.

Players’ ineligibility was the next topic, as Smrt explained how players can become ineligible. That status would remain until the player(s) are reinstated or their eligibility runs out. This is an argument for the U of L appeal.

“One of our basis for our response for the vacation not being appropriate was if these athletes would have gone through the restoration process at that time, they would have been restored without loss of eligibility,” Smrt said.

Smrt said the COI justified its penalties by the nature of McGee’s benefits, while U of L believes the value of those benefits should be penalized.

One of the more intense exchanges in the 30-minutes press conference was when Pitino was asked what he is taking responsibility for in this scandal.

“I’m not going to answer that question,” Pitino said.

Moments later, Pitino said he takes responsibility for the program and leading his players and staff down the right path.

“I’ve had 31 coaches go on the be head coaches in college as well as assistant coaches in the pros — some of the best leaders in the game. One person did the wrong thing,” Pitino said.

Included in the NCAA’s penalties, Louisville must pay back any shared money from 2012-2015 postseason tournaments. U of L did not have estimates for how much that is at the time of the conference.

In a conference dominated by Smrt and Pitino, Jurich made his first statement 17 minutes in. The AD expressed how much U of L means to him and said he didn’t see this punishment coming.

“I thought we did everything above and beyond when we found out about this incident. My greatest disappointment is with the (NCAA) because we followed their guidelines to a ‘T’ and exceeded in most positions,” Jurich said. “We were overly aggressive in penalties we gave ourself and wanted to make sure we took this very seriously and responsibly. Not one time did I ever hear about a red flag.”

Whether more than one staff member knew what was going on between players and strippers is a huge part of this case. According to the NCAA’s findings, there was no evidence anyone aside from McGee knew about the situation.

Pitino ended the conference with a statement. “Leaders lead. I plan on staying here and winning multiple championships, not just one. I plan on going to multiple Final Fours, not just one. And that’s what leaders do,” Pitino said.

“We did not deserve what they gave us and that’s the bottom line. (The NCAA) made a very large mistake … we are just as disturbed as the committee is about the situation and we will fight every bit of it to the end.”

The saga surround the men’s basketball program began fall of 2015, and many expected the end to come today. But with the NCAA’s ruling, a third chapter appears to be coming.

Photo by Dalton Ray / The Louisville Cardinal

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Rick Pitino suspended by NCAA and men’s basketball placed on four-year probation http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/rick-pitino-suspended-ncaa-mens-basketball-place-four-year-probation/ http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/rick-pitino-suspended-ncaa-mens-basketball-place-four-year-probation/#respond Thu, 15 Jun 2017 15:47:45 +0000 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/?p=48974 By Dalton Ray– The NCAA has suspended men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino for the first five ACC games of the 2017-2018 season and placed the program on a four-year probation. The sanctions result from the NCAA’s investigation into a sex scandal brought to national attention by Katina Powell’s book ‘Breaking Cardinal Rules’ in fall of […]

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By Dalton Ray–

The NCAA has suspended men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino for the first five ACC games of the 2017-2018 season and placed the program on a four-year probation. The sanctions result from the NCAA’s investigation into a sex scandal brought to national attention by Katina Powell’s book ‘Breaking Cardinal Rules’ in fall of 2015.

U of L also faces a vacation of basketball records for ineligible student-athletes competing between December 2010 to July 2014.

“The university will provide a written report containing the games impacted (by the vacation of records),” the NCAA’s release said, “to the NCAA media coordination and statistics staff within 45 days of the public decision release.”

The NCAA is not discussing games impacted by the sanctions — which wins will or will not be taken away — because of “standard practice.”

Louisville faces a reduction in scholarships and recruiting restrictions during probation, a $5,000 fine and would return some money earned for its appearances in the 2012 to 2015 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championships.

Interim President Greg Postel said the university will appeal the NCAA’s decision.

“The entire U of L community is saddened by what took place. It never should have happened, and that is why the school acted to severely penalize itself in 2016,” Postel’s statement said. “Today, however, the NCAA Division I Committee on Infractions went beyond what we consider to be fair and reasonable. We intend to appeal all aspects of the penalties.”

“The person responsible for these activities, Andre McGee, long ago left the university, and he has yet to cooperate with investigating officials. We are disappointed that he was not cooperative. In contrast, U of L did cooperate. We wanted the NCAA Enforcement Staff to uncover what happened. We have been open and transparent throughout this process.”

McGee, the former director of basketball operations, has received a 10-year show cause order and former assistant coach Brandon Williams received a one-year show cause order. A show-cause order bars McGee from all athletic-related duties and from interacting with possible students and their parents at NCAA schools. Williams could lose some or all athletic privileges like McGee, but the NCAA university employing him would decide.

“NCAA members agree that schools must provide a safe, healthy and positive environment for their student-athletes, not only academically, but in all facets of their lives,” the panel said. “The former operations director, the individual entrusted to keep order at Minardi Hall, created an environment that has no place on a college campus and was directly at odds with college athletics and higher education.”

By not cooperating, McGee and Williams violated the NCAA ethical conduct rules.

Photo by Nancy Hanner / The Louisville Cardinal

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Brendan McKay wins third straight John Olerud Award http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/brendan-mckay-wins-third-straight-john-olerud-award/ http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/brendan-mckay-wins-third-straight-john-olerud-award/#respond Mon, 12 Jun 2017 16:31:45 +0000 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/?p=48890 By Dalton Ray– Baseball’s Brendan McKay is the recipient of the 2017 John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year and is the only three-time winner of the award. This is McKay’s fourth major award in 2017 as he is also the ACC Player of the Year and national Player of the Year by Baseball America and […]

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By Dalton Ray–

Baseball’s Brendan McKay is the recipient of the 2017 John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year and is the only three-time winner of the award. This is McKay’s fourth major award in 2017 as he is also the ACC Player of the Year and national Player of the Year by Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball newspaper.

Holding a 2.34 ERA and 10-3 record as a pitcher, McKay’s 140 strikeouts is a season-high for U of L. McKay is surging at the plate with career-highs in batting average (.343), RBIs (56) and home runs (17).

McKay became Louisville’s all-time strikeout leader in the Super Regional against Kentucky and has 385 entering the College World Series.

For his career, McKay is 31-10 with a 2.15 ERA allowing only 15 home runs in 310.1 innings. The junior has 213 career hits, 131 RBIs and 27 home runs with a .328 average.

McKay and the Cardinals take on Texas A&M in the College World Series on either June 17 or 18.

Photo by Dalton Ray / The Louisville Cardinal

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Drew Ellis jacks baseball to the College World Series http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/drew-ellis-jacks-baseball-college-world-series/ http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/drew-ellis-jacks-baseball-college-world-series/#respond Sat, 10 Jun 2017 20:33:55 +0000 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/?p=48919 By Dalton Ray– A pair of home runs by junior Drew Ellis elevated baseball past rival Kentucky in the NCAA Super Regional, advancing the Cardinals to the College World Series. Junior Brendan McKay (10-3) went 6.2 innings and sat down nine. Senior Logan Taylor went 2-for-4 with a RBI and junior Colby Fitch went 3-for-5 […]

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By Dalton Ray–

A pair of home runs by junior Drew Ellis elevated baseball past rival Kentucky in the NCAA Super Regional, advancing the Cardinals to the College World Series.

Junior Brendan McKay (10-3) went 6.2 innings and sat down nine. Senior Logan Taylor went 2-for-4 with a RBI and junior Colby Fitch went 3-for-5 with a RBI.

Expected to be a pitching duel, McKay and Kentucky’s Sean Hjelle (11-4) played to their defense early. Four of the first seven outs were fly outs as the aces settled in.

Ellis battled with Hjelle in the top of the second inning and on the sixth pitch of the at bat Ellis went yard to left field. Junior Devin Hairston singled to follow Ellis, but a pair of ground outs ended the inning.

Leading 1-0 in the bottom of the second, Louisville got a new all-time strikeout leader in McKay with his first K of the afternoon.

Both teams traded singles in the third and fourth innings, but nothing came of it.

A single from Fitch in the top of the fifth advanced Taylor to third base. Sophomore Devin Mann waved in Taylor with a sac-fly to right center.

A double and hit by pitch put two runners on for UK in the bottom of the inning. A sac-fly from Marcus Carson plated Kentucky’s first run of the game. Heading to the sixth inning, the Cats trailed 2-1.

Ellis rocked Hjelle again in the top of the sixth inning, smashing his 20th home run of the season. Hjelle walked junior Devin Hairston next and was soon replaced by Zach Pop.

Sophomore Josh Stowers wasted no time getting to know Pop, tripling off his first pitch and driving home Hairston.

A hit by pitch and walk loaded the bases but another Kentucky pitching change took place. Fitch hit into a double play, ending the threat.

Back-to-back singles started the bottom of the sixth inning for UK and a balk moved both runners to second and third base. With two runners in scoring position and one out, McKay responded with two strikeouts to end the jam.

Kentucky’s Troy Squires singled to start the bottom of the seventh and a wild pitch advanced him to second base. Tyler Marshall singled to center field, putting runners on the corners with no outs for the Wildcats.

McKay answered with his ninth strikeout and a pop up in the in field gave the Cards two outs. UK lead-off man Tristian Pompey singled to center field and sliced into the U of L lead. Sophomore Sam Bornder replaced McKay after the RBI made the Louisville lead 4-2.

A walked loaded the bases for UK but Bordner bounced back with a strikeout to end the inning.

With two outs in the eighth inning, freshman Tyler Fitzgerald was walked. Taylor’s RBI double made the lead 5-2. Fitch kept the scoring going as his single dropped between three Wildcats in the out field.

Kentucky failed to score a run in the bottom of the inning.

An error allowed Ellis to reach to the start ninth and Hairston belted a shot to put runners on the corners with no outs.

Louisville loaded the bases with two outs but Taylor struck out and UK ended the threat.

With one on and no outs in the final at bat, Taylor hawked down a ball in the out field that led him running into the wall. A strikeout and fly out ended the game.

Louisville (52-10) set a school record for wins with their sweep of UK. U of L earns their fourth trip to Omaha after back-to-back losses in the Super Regionals in 2015 and 2016.

Photos by Dalton Ray / The Louisville Cardinal

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Record crowd spectates baseball’s 5-2 win over UK in Supers http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/record-crowd-spectates-baseballs-5-2-win-uk-supers/ http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/record-crowd-spectates-baseballs-5-2-win-uk-supers/#respond Fri, 09 Jun 2017 19:25:11 +0000 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/?p=48835 By Dalton Ray– Junior Drew Ellis accounted for four of the five runs in baseball’s 5-2 win over rival UK. The NCAA Super Regional win puts U of L one win away from their fourth trip to Omaha. A record crowd of 6,235 people watched the opening game of the Louisville Super Regional. Junior Kade […]

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By Dalton Ray–

Junior Drew Ellis accounted for four of the five runs in baseball’s 5-2 win over rival UK. The NCAA Super Regional win puts U of L one win away from their fourth trip to Omaha. A record crowd of 6,235 people watched the opening game of the Louisville Super Regional.

Junior Kade McClure moves to 8-3 after pitching five innings with six strikeouts on 75 pitches. McClure and senior Adam Wolf combined for a shutout heading into the ninth inning.

Coach Dan McDonnell said McClure stayed in the zone and kept UK on their toes.

“There are pitchers that have the ability to keep everybody in the flow of the game and we felt like Kade was in a really good flow today. We challenged him to set the tone. Set the tone for the weekend and make it clear,” McDonnell said.

Crooked number in the first

Leading off the bottom of the first inning, senior Logan Taylor ripped a double to left field. Sophomore Devin Mann drove home the Lexington Catholic graduate two batters later.

UK’s Zach Thompson (8-3) struggled early and a pick-off error advanced runners to second and third base. A catcher interference gave Louisville another run and the Cards led 2-0 after the first inning.

“It’s definitley nice to have a lead going into the second inning,” McClure said. “There were a couple times where I fell behind and (the defense) fought back for me. I tried to put the ball in the zone and let the defense make the plays. I have the best out field in America, the best in field in America and a brick wall behind home plate.”

El-bomb ends dry spell

From the second to the fourth inning, the teams combined for two hits. McClure controlled the strike zone and Thompson shook off the rocky start.

Two walks and a single in the bottom of the fourth loaded the bases for U of L, but a strikeout ended the scare for UK.

Ellis erupted the crowd with a three-run homer in the bottom of the fifth inning. Ellis’ 18th home run of the season put U of L up 5-0.

Cats going down scratching 

Trailing 5-0 heading to the ninth inning, UK’s Evan White homer to kick off the inning.

Louisville’s stud closer Lincoln Henzman responded with two quick ground outs, putting the pressure on UK. A single and a walk put the tying runs on board for Kentucky.

Tyler Marshall singled and cut the lead to three. Cardinal fans became uneasy with runners on the corners and two outs, but a strikeout secured the win.

Photos by Dalton Ray / The Louisville Cardinal

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Q&A with Kentucky Kernel’s Charlee Schaefer on baseball’s series versus UK http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/qa-kentucky-kernels-charlee-schaefer-baseballs-series-versus-uk/ http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/qa-kentucky-kernels-charlee-schaefer-baseballs-series-versus-uk/#respond Thu, 08 Jun 2017 21:55:18 +0000 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/?p=48833 By Dalton Ray– Perhaps the most intriguing NCAA Super Regional series is between in-state rivals Louisville and Kentucky. Known for their basketball rivalry, the Cardinals are 12-10 against Kentucky since coach Dan McDonnell took over the program in 2007. For Louisville and Kentucky’s first ever postseason battle, we reached out to the Kentucky Kernel’s baseball […]

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By Dalton Ray–

Perhaps the most intriguing NCAA Super Regional series is between in-state rivals Louisville and Kentucky. Known for their basketball rivalry, the Cardinals are 12-10 against Kentucky since coach Dan McDonnell took over the program in 2007.

For Louisville and Kentucky’s first ever postseason battle, we reached out to the Kentucky Kernel’s baseball beat writer Charlee Schaefer to gain more insight on the Wildcats.

Question: Coach Nick Minigione took Kentucky to their first ever Super Regional in his first season as head coach. What type of style does he bring to the table?

Answer: Coach Mingione is a motivator. From day one, he has pushed the team to be their best selves. He always focuses on the positive and does not let his players make excuses for anything. The coaching staff and the players love and trust one another and they are a family.

Q: Kentucky has seven batters with a batting average over .300 and rank seventh in the nation in overall average. What is the difference between the bats this year and last year?

A: With a lineup complete with many left-handed batters and two switch-hitters, they bring a different approach to the plate. This team jives well together and they focus on team goals, rather than individual. They truly want the best for their teammates.

Q: UK has four established pitchers, but none have a ERA under .350. Is that more on the pitching staff or defense?

A: Coach (Jim) Belanger and the rest of the staff have done great things with the team this year. Pitchers have off days in which they heavily rely on defense, which hasn’t been the strongest this year.

Q: Before Regionals, Kentucky lost four out of five. Is it safe to say the Wildcats have shaken that spell? How so?

A: The Cats did not perform well in Gainesville against the University of Florida, or at the SEC Tournament. They put too much pressure on themselves and played tight. Streaks in baseball are very important and if the players pour into each other as they did this weekend, they will be unstoppable.

Q: Who are two players U of L players need to be aware of this coming weekend?

A: UK’s ace and SEC Pitcher of the Year Sean Hjelle and All-American first baseman Evan White. Hjelle is coming off of one of his best performances of the year, the regional championship, where he threw only 35 pitches in three innings, and struck out five batters. White is considered one of the best first basemen in college baseball and is a force on both sides of the ball.

Q: Who wins and why?

A: Kentucky will win because they are on a winning streak that will be hard to beat. UK is hungry for a title because they have never made it this far and they have something to prove. The University of Kentucky is known for basketball, and it is time that that changed. The Cats are one of the strongest teams offensively in the nation and their defense has improved immensely.

Photo by Nancy Hanner / The Louisville Cardinal

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Baseball wins NCAA Regional with victory over Xavier http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/baseball-wins-ncaa-regional-victory-xavier/ http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/baseball-wins-ncaa-regional-victory-xavier/#comments Mon, 05 Jun 2017 03:54:52 +0000 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/?p=48802 By Matt Bradshaw– Baseball advanced to their fifth straight Super Regional with a narrow 8-7 victory over Xavier. The game lasted four hours and had five lead changes. Josh Stowers was the player of the game and led the Cardinals on offense, batting 2-for-3 with a home run and four RBIs. Both teams began the […]

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By Matt Bradshaw–

Baseball advanced to their fifth straight Super Regional with a narrow 8-7 victory over Xavier. The game lasted four hours and had five lead changes.

Josh Stowers was the player of the game and led the Cardinals on offense, batting 2-for-3 with a home run and four RBIs.

Both teams began the game scoreless through the first three innings.

Xavier struck first in the top of the fourth, scoring two with a RBI single.

Louisville answered in the bottom of the inning with a three-run homer from Josh Stowers, taking the lead 3-2.

Freshman Nick Bennett gave up a solo home run in the top of the fifth, allowing Xavier to tie the game 3-3.

Xavier retook the lead 4-3 in the top of the sixth. The Musketeers singled with new pitcher Riley Thompson on the mound, then Thompson made an errant pick-off attempt to place the runner on third. Xavier drove in the run with a RBI bunt.

Louisville took the lead right back from Xavier in the bottom of the sixth. Jake Snider, Logan Taylor and Brendan McKay each drove in runs with RBI singles, grabbing a 6-4 lead for the Cardinals.

Xavier retook the lead again 7-6 in the seventh. An RBI single brought the Musketeers within one, and they scored two more from a bad double play attempt by the Cardinal defense

In the fifth lead change of the game, Louisville put themselves back on top 8-7 in the bottom of the seventh. Stowers first drove in Colin Lyman with a RBI double to tie Xavier. Taylor then drove in Stowers with his second RBI single of the game, grabbing the lead and clinching the victory.

Both teams were scoreless in the eighth and ninth innings. Lincoln Henzman closed out the game on the mound, saving the 8-7 win.

The team moves forward to the Super Regional on Friday, June 9th at Jim Patterson Stadium. They face the winner of the NC State and Kentucky of the Lexington regional.

Photo by Nancy Hanner / The Louisville Cardinal 

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Eighth inning catapults baseball past Sooners in NCAAs http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/eighth-inning-catapults-baseball-past-sooners-ncaas/ http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/2017/06/eighth-inning-catapults-baseball-past-sooners-ncaas/#comments Sun, 04 Jun 2017 03:52:05 +0000 http://www.louisvillecardinal.com/?p=48798 By Conner Farrell– In the second matchup of the NCAA regional, top-seeded U of L baseball used a huge eighth inning to down Oklahoma. Scoring seven of their 11 runs in the inning, Louisville won 11-1. The game began as a pitcher’s duel with both teams only registering one hit a piece through five innings. […]

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By Conner Farrell–

In the second matchup of the NCAA regional, top-seeded U of L baseball used a huge eighth inning to down Oklahoma. Scoring seven of their 11 runs in the inning, Louisville won 11-1.

The game began as a pitcher’s duel with both teams only registering one hit a piece through five innings.

Junior Brenden McKay dazzled through the first four innings, surrendering no hits and striking out five.

Even with McKay’s blistering start, the Sooners struck first recording the first run of the game off an RBI double from sophomore Kyle Medenhall.

In the following inning, the Cards responded with a sac fly from senior Logan Taylor to score sophomore Josh Stowers from third base, tying the game at one.

McKay exited in the top of the sixth inning in favor of senior Jake Sparger, who would get the team out of a jam with two runners on base with two outs.

McKay went 6.3 innings with 100 pitches, seven strikeouts and three hits given up.

Following a scoreless frame in the seventh, the boom would be lowered by the Cards in the eighth.

With the bases loaded, Taylor started the scoring with a two run RBI single to push the lead to 3-1.

The next at bat yielded another two run hit, this time a triple by junior Colby Fitch to tack two more onto the lead.

The back-to-back RBI hits proved to be the ignitor for the Cards.

As three more pitchers got their turn on the mound for the Sooners, the Cardinal hitters added on three more runs for insurance to make the lead 8-1.

The Cards tacked on three more runs in the following inning with the exclamation point coming from McKay who scored two with double down the first base line.

Four different Cardinal hitters recorded two-or-more RBIs in the game with Taylor leading them all with three.

The team is back in action at 7 p.m. tomorrow to face the winner of Oklahoma and Xavier for a spot in the NCAA Super Regional.

Photo by Dalton Ray / The Louisville Cardinal 

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