LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Senior Jerad Grundy fired five one-run innings in his first career midweek start, leading Kentucky to a 4-1 win over Wright State, on Tuesday night at Cliff Hagan Stadium.
Kentucky (28-19) jumped out to a 2-0 lead after the first inning, adding single runs in the sixth and seventh inning to post the 4-1 win. UK got the strong outing from Grundy, making his first career midweek start, and a three-hit game from freshman outfielder Kyle Barrett at the top of the order.
A native of Johnsburg, Ill., Grundy (6-5) worked five strong innings, allowing one run and no walks, striking out five.
Senior Walter Wijas took over to start the sixth, working two innings, allowing just one hit and no walks, striking out two. Sophomore Chandler Shepherd worked a shutout eighth with a single surrendered and a strikeout. Junior righty Trevor Gott retired all three hitters he faced in the ninth inning to pick up his school-record 11th save of 2013 and 22nd of his storied three-year career.
The one-run pitching performance was the fifth consecutive dominating outing on the mound for the Wildcats, who had allowed just 13 earned runs in the last five games, including four tilts against top-25 foes. UK has a 2.60 ERA over its last five games, with its bullpen allowing just one run in that span.
UK got the career-high three hits from Barrett, who added a walk in his 15th consecutive start as the leadoff hitter. Zac Zellers, J.T. Riddle, Micheal Thomas and Matt Reida each added singles, with Thomas and Barrett each driving in runs. Greg Fettes and Max Kuhn each had two-walk games.
Wright State (20-24) starter Cody Kipilchack (1-1) worked three innings, allowing one hit and two runs, walking three and striking out two. WSU used Taylor Braun, E.J. Trapino, Trevor Swaney, Logan Blair and Travis Hissong in relief.
UK will return to action on Friday, welcoming No. 1 Vanderbilt to Cliff Hagan Stadium for a 6:30 p.m. ET matchup.
Kentucky jumped out to an early lead after posting two runs in the bottom of the first. Barrett led off with a walk and the Wildcats loaded the bases with a single from Zellers into right-centerfield and a hit by pitch of Austin Cousino. A.J. Reed reached on a fielder’s choice that scored Barrett and Fettes brought Zellers home on a sacrifice fly to rightfield for the second run of the inning.
Wright State added one with two outs in the top of the fourth. Kieston Greene led off the inning with a single up the middle and with two outs stole second to get in scoring position. Michael Timm lined a single into right-centerfield to score Greene for the Raiders.
Kentucky extended its lead in the sixth as two walks put runners on first and second with one out for the Wildcats. Barrett knocked Kuhn in with a line-drive single into centerfield to give UK a 3-1 lead.
The Wildcats added another in the bottom of the seventh to extend their lead to 4-1. Fettes walked with one out and Riddle followed with a single up the middle. A Kuhn walk loaded the bases for Thomas and the catcher delivered, singling into right-centerfield to score Fettes.
GAME NOTES: UK scored multiple runs in the first inning for the first time since April 2 at No. 9 Louisville … UK improved to 13-3 when scoring in the first inning and 20-7 when scoring first … UK is now 18-9 at home and 12-3 at home in non-league games … UK is now 2-2 in May … UK is now 8-3 in midweek games … UK improves to 9-7 against left-handed starting pitching … UK is now 7-9 in night games … UK leads the all-time series with Wright State, 12-7, including a 11-5 mark in games played in Lexington … UK has won six consecutive meetings in the series.
- Junior second baseman J.T. Riddle made his 113th consecutive start.
- Riddle struck out multiple times for the first game of 2013.
- Senior lefty Jerad Grundy made his 12th start of the year and the 28th of his career.
- It marked Grundy’s first career midweek start.
- In five non-conference starts in 2013, Grundy has a 1.44 ERA in 31.2 innings pitched.
- Senior Zac Zellers has now reached base safely in 11 consecutive games.
- Sophomore Austin Cousino was hit by his SEC-leading 19th and 20th pitches.
- Cousino has now been hit by the third-most pitches in UK single-season history.
- Freshman Greg Fettes hung his second sacrifice fly of the year.
- Fettes drew his third two-walk game of the year.
- Junior Micheal Thomas was hit by his 15th pitch of the year.
- Thomas laid down his seventh sacrifice bunt of the year.
- Freshman Kyle Barrett extended his hitting streak to a team-high 11 games, the longest streak of 2013 for UK.
- Barrett recorded his 15th and 16th two-out hits of the year.
- Barrett tied his career high with three hits, his third career three-hit game and the first since April 16 vs. No. 8 Louisville.
- Junior Matt Reida notched his 12th two-out hit of 2013.
- Senior Walter Wijas made his team-high 24th appearance of the year.
- Two innings for Wijas marked his longest outing since March 23, equaling his longest outing of 2013.
- Sophomore Max Kuhn drew his team-high 33rd and 34th walks.
- Kuhn drew his first multi-walk game since March 29 vs. Georgia.
- Junior righty Trevor Gott recorded his single-season school-record 11th save of the year.
- Gott now has 22 career saves, tops in program history.
- Gott has saved 11-of-14 chances in 2013 and 22-of-26 in his career.