Coffel’s Big Blast, Schoonover’s 10 K’s Enough to Fend off Michigan
LEXINGTON, Ky. – Erin Coffel tied Brittany Cervantes for second place on the Kentucky Softball all-time home runs list with her 48th career blast and Stephanie Schoonover struck out 10 batters as the Wildcats beat Michigan 2-1 on Sunday afternoon to close out the 2023 John Cropp Classic.
Coffel went yard to center field in the bottom of the third inning to tie the game at 1-1 and Grace Lorsung poked an RBI single into center field to score Kennedy Sullivan in the same half inning, as that was all the offense the Wildcats would need to race past the Wolverines in the game.
Stephanie Schoonover pitched a complete game, striking out 10 batters, marking her sixth-straight start with 10 or more strikeouts in the game, as she only walked one all afternoon. The Wolverines lone run came in the top of the first inning on a two-out home run by Keke Tholl. Schoonover retired the final 14 batters of the game in order, and only surrendered two hits all afternoon.
Kentucky is now 19-5-1 on the 2023 season with Sunday’s result and pushes its season-high winning streak to eight games with the win. The Wildcats will take the week off from midweek games before returning home to John Cropp Stadium this weekend vs. No. 24 Texas A&M for the Wildcats’ home opener against the Aggies running Friday (6:30pm ET), Saturday (2pm ET) and Sunday (1pm ET) at JSC. Tickets are available at UKathletics.com.
The key play of the game was Grace Lorsung’s RBI single in the bottom of the third to score the eventual game-winning run. Kennedy Sullivan was standing on second and Meeko Harrison was on first with two outs in a 1-1 game as Lorsung deposited a blooper into shallow CF to score Sullivan. Harrison was able to go first to third on a Michigan error as the Wildcats three-hit inning continued.
Erin Coffel was the key player in the game, going 1-for-2 at the plate with her 12th home run of the season in the bottom of the third inning. With that HR, she registered her 48th-career long ball, tying Brittany Cervantes for second all-time on the UK record list for most career home runs. She is now 13 homers away from tying Abbey Cheek (2016-19) who ended her run with 61.
14. Kentucky’s Stephanie Schoonover retired the final 14 batters of the game in order.
Keke Tholl hit a two-out home run to straight-away center in the top of the first inning. MICH 1, UK 0
Erin Coffel homered with one out in the top of the third to tie the game. After walking and getting to second on a Meeko Harrison single, Sullivan scored on Lorsung’s RBI single into center. FINAL – Kentucky 2, Michigan 1
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