Junior Meagan Prince shined yet again in the circle for Kentucky, taking a perfect game one out deep into the top of the last inning before an infield single by Indiana’s Kassi Farmer broke up the bid. However, Kentucky still hung on to beat the Hoosiers 3-1 on Wednesday night in the home opener for UK at John Cropp Stadium.

With the win, Kentucky continues its best start in program history, closing the night with a 19-3 overall record as conference play begins on Friday night in the Palmetto State. Meagan Prince moves to 9-0 on the season in the circle, just two wins shy of setting a new single-season wins career high before SEC play begins.

Kentucky has now won three home openers in a row at John Cropp Stadium. The Wildcats return to JCS on Friday, March 18 hosting the Ole Miss Rebels as SEC play at home gets underway. First pitch for that game is slated for 6 p.m. ET on the SEC Network+.

SEC play commences on Friday night in Columbia, S.C., as the Wildcats travel back to the Palmetto State for the second straight weekend to face the South Carolina Gamecocks. First pitch on Friday is set for 6 p.m. ET, with 1 p.m. ET games on Saturday and Sunday with both weekend games televised live on the SEC Network with Cara Capuano and Cheri Kempf.

Key Stat
Two. Two is the number of perfect games that Kentucky pitching has carried into the top of the last inning of play, to have it broken up with one out in the inning. Kelsey Nunley, who came on and saved the game in the top of the seventh on Wednesday – had a perfect game with one out in the top of the last inning against Texas Tech before a one-out single ended the bid.

Maisie Steed also broke the ice in the scoring column five innings into the game, with her second home run in the past two games, with a lazer to left over the wall to put UK up 1-0.

Key Play
The key play in the game was heads-up baserunning by freshman Hannah Huffman – who scored the winning run on a throwing error by the Indiana right fielder as the ball was bobbled at the bag at third. Huffman was pinch running for Sagermann at second, took third on the flyout, and turned the corner fast and alertly took home to score the eventual game-winning run.

Key Player
Hannah Huffman was the key player in the game, scoring the game-winning run.

Run Recap
Senior Maisie Steed led off the top of the fifth in a scoreless game with a home run to left field, her second in as many games. After a single by senior Nikki Sagermann and a walk to Abbey Cheek, UK had runners on first and second with one out. Brooklin Hinz flied to right, but pinch runner Hannah Huffman took third, and then home on a throwing error. Kentucky then executed the double-steal to perfection as Cheek attempted to take second, and Huffman stole home in the process on the late throw from the middle infield. UK 3, IU 0

In the top of the seventh, with a perfect game intact, an infield single by Indiana’s Kassi Farmer broke up the bid to give IU its first baserunner of the night. After a stolen base and a single down the line, that scored a run, Kelsey Nunley came in to save the game, and close out Kentucky’s 19th win of the season. FINAL – No. 15 Kentucky 3, Indiana 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.

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by Chris Shoals

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