The No. 18 Kentucky softball team lost just its second game of the season on Saturday afternoon, dropping a 5-1 decision to the No. 22 California Golden Bears in the second day of the 2016 Campbell/Cartier Classic hosted by San Diego State. With the loss, Kentucky falls to 7-2 on the season, while Cal improves to 5-1.

Kentucky’s Kelsey Nunley pitched 4.2 innings, allowing four runs, just one earned with four walks and a strikeout. Saturday was her first loss of the season, as her record drops to 4-1 on the year. Cal’s N. Ontiveros gets the win, pitching all seven inning allowing just one run on five Kentucky hits with five strikeouts.

Kentucky will close its 11-day west coast swing on Saturday against the South Dakota Coyotes and the Texas Tech Red Raiders from San Diego. The first game will start at Noon ET with the second game starting at 2:30 p.m. ET. Live stats will be available on UKathletics.com. There will be no live video.

Key Stat
3. The Wildcats had three errors in the game on Saturday leading directly to three runs scored by the Golden Bears. Kentucky has been rather solid in the field this season, only committing an average of just over one error per game coming into Saturday’s contest with Cal.

Key Play
The game-winning run was scored on a Kentucky defensive miscue in the fifth inning, as J. Jackson scored from second on a hard-hit ball to the right side with runners on second and third. That made the score 2-0, and the two runs would be all that Cal would need to win the game.

Key Player
Sylver Samuel went 2-for-4 in the game for Kentucky, getting to second base both times in the game that she was on base. Samuel is now batting a team-high .545 on the season at 12-of-22 overall.

Run Recap
In the top of the third inning, J. Jackson for California led off the inning with a single, and was moved to second base on a fielder’s choice. Krysten McCue then hit a triple to rightcenter field to score Jackson, and Cal took the early lead. CAL 1, UK 0

In the top of the fifth, Cal made it 4-0, scoring three runs on one hit. After back-to-back walks to lead off the inning, a sac bunt by McCue moved runners to second and third with one out in the inning. Then Kobie Pettis stepped up and hit a ball to the right side that was misplayed by the Kentucky defense, and scored the leadoff batter. After an RBI single made it 3-0, Cal would load the bases, and get a hit batsman to bring in the fourth run of the game. CAL 4, UK 0

The Golden Bears would make it 5-0 in the sixth, as back-to-back singles started the inning for Cal to put runners on the corners with no outs. Pettis would deliver again with runners in scoring position, with a one-out RBI single up the middle to make it five runs. CAL 5, UK 0

Kentucky’s only run in the game came in the bottom of the sixth inning, as Katie Reed came around to score after a lead-off single. Reed slapped one into rightcenter field to get the inning going and was advanced over to second on a Nikki Sagermann groundout. After Brooklin Hinz was hit by a pitch, freshman Jenny Schaper hit an RBI single into the gap in right to score Reed. FINAL – No. 22 California 5, No. 18 Kentucky 1

For the latest on the Kentucky softball team, follow @UKSoftball on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, as well as on the web at UKathletics.com.

by Chris Shoals

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