Test Aced: Kentucky baseball rallies past Evansville

The Wildcats come from behind twice, including deciding 7th inning outburst
John Rhodes, Austin Schults and Jaren Shelby.

Kentucky beats Evansville 8 - 5.

Photo by Sarah...
John Rhodes, Austin Schults and Jaren Shelby. Kentucky beats Evansville 8 - 5. Photo by Sarah Caputi | UK Athletics(Sarah Caputi | UK Athletics)
Published: Mar. 3, 2021 at 8:42 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. – Freshman Reuben Church smacked a go-ahead, two-run double in the seventh inning as Kentucky twice rallied from deficits to defeat Evansville, 8-5, at Kentucky Proud Park on Wednesday. The win moved the Wildcats to 6-0, continuing their best start in nine years.

Showing a grittiness it hadn’t needed thus far, UK found a way to win despite not playing its sharpest game of the young season. The Cats fell behind 2-0 just three batters into the game and later saw the Aces take a 5-4 lead in the top of the seventh without getting a hit in the inning but responded immediately both times.

The winning rally started with Austin Schultz dropping a single into left field and John Rhodes taking a pitch off the elbow. Oraj Anu patiently worked a walk to load the bases before Church ambushed the first pitch he saw for a double into left-centerfield, scoring Schultz and Rhodes for a 6-5 lead. Pinch hitter Trae Harmon added an insurance run with a sacrifice fly and the Cats’ bullpen took it from there with Sean Harney earning his third save and second in as many nights.

Church, who finished 2-for-3 with two runs, three RBI, a walk and the decisive double, now has seven extra-base hits in five games. He leads the Cats in hits, RBI and doubles despite not playing in the season opener.