The University of Kentucky baseball team combined a powerful offensive display with a stellar pitching debut to earn a 10-2 victory over Eastern Michigan at Spartanburg, S.C., on Saturday.
Kentucky pounded out 13 hits, including a home run by junior Luke Maile and three RBI each from freshman A.J. Reed and sophomore Matt Reida, in improving to 2-0.
Left-hander Jerad Grundy, a junior transfer from Miami, Fla., and Heartland Community College in Illinois, did not allow a run in 52⁄3 innings in making his first start for Kentucky.
"We were pretty pleased (with the offense)," UK head coach Gary Henderson said after a second straight game scoring 10 runs. "We swung it really well today; we hit a lot of balls on the nose. ... A lot of guys got hits, but more important than that they got hits when it mattered."
Maile, a catcher from Covington Catholic, led off the second inning with a solo homer to left center to give Kentucky a 1-0 lead. The Cats added two runs in the third inning, two in the sixth and five in the seventh.
Sophomore left-fielder Lucas Witt led Kentucky's 13-hit attack with three hits and scored a pair of runs.
Reed, the designated hitter, and Reida, the shortstop, each went 2-for-4. Freshman Austin Cousino and Maile also had two hits each.
Grundy allowed three hits and three walks with four strikeouts. Alex Phillips took over with two runners on in the sixth and closed off the rally with a strikeout.
"I liked a lot of things," Henderson said about Grundy. "He was pretty amped up in the first inning and walked a couple guys and got in a jam. He got out of it and then he found his rhythm and did a really nice job of throwing a lot of strikes. He kept them off balance with more than one pitch for a strike. I thought at one point he had 12 guys out in a row. He found a rhythm and pounded the strike zone."
The Cats played their second straight error-free game.
"Well, 18 innings and no errors, nothing even close yet, is pretty nice," Henderson said.
Starter Joe Battistelli took the loss for Eastern Michigan (0-2), pitching 52⁄3 innings and allowing 10 hits and five runs.
Kentucky returns to action Sunday in the finale of its trip to South Carolina, facing USC Upstate at 3 p.m. The game will be broadcast live on WLAP-AM 630.