Last Laff: Lafferty Continues Spotless Start to Kentucky Career

Last Laff: Lafferty Continues Spotless Start to Kentucky Career


Nick Lopez hit his first home run in blue to break the game open and Drew Lafferty continued the brilliant start to his collegiate career on the mound as No. 25 run-ruled Eastern Kentucky, 10-0, in seven innings on Tuesday.

The teams will meet again on EKU’s campus at 6:30 p.m. ET on Wednesday.

Lopez lifted a pitch into the UK bullpen in left field as part of a five-run third inning. The California native leads UK (11-1) in extra-base hits (7) and batting average (.371). He also benefitted from batting behind Patrick Herrera, who reached base safely in all five of his plate appearances.

Lafferty, a redshirt from Pennsylvania, was economical in his five innings of work. He has not allowed a run in the first 10.0 innings of his collegiate career and the two hits EKU (2-10) managed on Tuesday marked the first two of the season Lafferty has allowed. He struck out a career-best five and did not walk anyone. Scoreless innings by Hayden Smith and Zach Hise extended the consecutive scoreless inning streak by the bullpen to 19.2 innings dating to February 25.

UK now has won seven straight games and 35 of its past 40 non-conference games.



  • Kentucky now is 11-1 in 2024.
    • The Wildcats are 6-0 at Kentucky Proud Park.
    • Kentucky is 11-1 in day games.
    • Kentucky has won 27 of its last 29 regular season non-conference games.
      • Kentucky is 35-5 vs. non-conference foes (including the Lexington Regional) since the beginning of the 2023 season.
      • This is program’s second-best start under Mingione, second to 2018, when the team began the season 12-1.
    • UK Coach Nick Mingione is in his eighth season at the helm and now owns a 227-151 career record.
      • Mingione needs 31 victories to become the second-winningest coach in school history.
      • UK is 89-34 in the month of March under Coach Mingione.
      • Mingione is 144-41 in non-conference games overall.
      • Mingione is 125-16 vs. non-Power Five opponents.
      • Kentucky is now 73-27-1 all-time vs. Eastern Kentucky.
    • Kentucky drew eight walks and three hit by pitch.
    • Kentucky’s bullpen has pitched 19.2 consecutive scoreless innings.
    • R-Freshman RHP Drew Lafferty picked up first collegiate victory.
      • He pitched a career-high 5.0 innings, allowing no runs on two hits.
      • He registered five strikeouts, a new career high, and did not walk anyone.
      • He has opened his career with 10 scoreless innings, allowing just two hits.
    • Junior Émilien Pitre went 2-for-5 with two runs and an RBI.
      • It was his sixth multi-hit game of the season and 24th of his career.
    • Junior Patrick Herrera went 1-for-1 with a run, RBI and three walks.
      • He reached safely in all four plate appearances.
    • Senior IF Nick Lopez went 1-for-4 with a run, three RBI and home run.
      • It was his first homer as a Wildcat, a three-run sot in the third inning.
    • Freshman INF Ethan Hindle smoked his first collegiate hit, a line drive double into the RCF gap.
    • R-Freshman C/INF Austin Fawley went 1-for-3 with a solo home run.
      • He has homered in each of the last two games in which he’s played.
      • He is the only Wildcat with two or more homers this season.



The Kentucky will head down I-75 to play EKU in Richmond, with first pitch set for 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, March 6. The game will be broadcast on the UK Sports Network, with streaming available on ESPN+.

Related Stories

View all