Paced by senior Chris Rusin's career-high 12 strikeouts, the Wildcats struck out a record 18 hitters and pounded out 18 hits in a 15-4 win over Western Michigan on Sunday at Cliff Hagan Stadium.
Rusin, a 2008 first-team All-Southeastern Conference starter, struck out the most hitters in a UK game since 2004.
Rusin worked five innings, allowing six hits and two earned runs with only one walk. After allowing the first three Broncos hitters to reach in the top of the first inning — on two outfield errors and a single — Rusin struck out the next six hitters.
Junior Tyler Henry came on to strike out four batters over 22⁄3 innings, and freshman Braden Kapteyn entered in the eighth inning and finished with two strikeouts.
The Wildcats got multi-hit games from Chris Bisson, Keenan Wiley, Cory Farris, Spencer Korus, Chad Wright and Marcus Nidiffer.
The Cats held a 6-3 lead heading into the bottom of the seventh inning, when Wright singled home Farris to make it a four-run contest.
UK (4-2) then blew the game wide open with an eight-run eighth inning.
Bisson opened the inning with a double, Chris Wade walked, and both advanced a base when Wiley flied out. Troy Frazier then popped out, but UK loaded the bases after two walks. Wright then singled up the middle for his fourth RBI of the game. With the bases still loaded, Nidiffer hit his second career triple, clearing the bases for three RBI. UK added three more runs before the inning was over.
The game was played in 20 mph winds blowing out to center and right field.
Kentucky 15, Western Michigan 4
Western Michigan 102 000 001— 4 9 2
Kentucky 410 010 18x—15 18 2
Stroud, Webber (7), Mowry (7), Hess (8), Miller (8) and Marquardt; Rusin, Henry (6), Kapteyn (8) and Suerdick. W—Rusin (1-1). L—Stroud (0-2). Sv—Kapteyn (1). 2B—Mosher (WM), Marquardt (WM), Bisson (UK), Wiley (UK), Korus (UK), Wright (UK). 3B—Nidiffer (UK).
Records—Western Michigan 0-5, Kentucky 4-2.