APSU Baseball kicked off their 2019 season by falling in all three of their opening week matchups with Kentucky.
The visiting Wildcats, who are picked to finish second in the SEC’s Eastern Division behind Florida, topped APSU in a noon-cap game on Friday, Feb. 15, 8-4. The guests continued that trend with a 12-5 win on Saturday, Feb. 16, and an 11-1 victory on Sunday, Feb. 17.
The opening-day affair was APSU’s best opportunity to top the Wildcats all weekend.
Garrett Spain ripped a triple to left field that scored Garrett Kueber and Parker Phillips. Spain’s at-bat resulted in the first runs scored for the season by APSU. In the bottom of the next frame, Malcolm Tipler knocked his own triple out to right field, scoring Phillips and Tyler Hubbard.
APSU carried a 4-2 lead into the eighth inning.
Jacques Pucheu started the contest on the mound and went six innings. The senior for Gulfport, Mississippi, struck out five of the 22 batters faced and allowed only two runs on three hits.
After the six-inning performance, Tucker Weaver and Brandon Vial made brief cameos for the Govs. It was off the arm of sophomore Harley Gollert that Kentucky found a way back into the duel.
The Wildcats’ Cam Hill doubled to left field to bring in Breydon Daniel. Two batters later T.J. Collett ripped a three-run blast over the left field fence to put Kentucky ahead by two. Gollert gave up four runs on four hits giving him the loss.
In the ninth, Kentucky added two runs off of Luke Brown to assure the win, including a solo home run to left field.
Baseball will return the diamond at Raymond C. Hand Park on Thursday, Feb. 21 as the Govs kick off the Mule Mix Classic by hosting Bradley at 3 p.m. Western Michigan, Toledo and Northern Illinois will also compete in the competition.