ATHENS, Ga. -- In a game that felt like a home run derby with five home runs between the teams, it was home runs from Bulldogs Lacey Sumerlin and Maeve McGuire that lifted the No. 16 Georgia softball team (25-4, 1-1) to a 7-5 win over No. 17 Kentucky (19-5, 1-1) on Sunday night.
In the Bulldogs' first SEC win of the year, Sumerlin put Georgia up for good with a grand slam in the first while McGuire knocked out her third home run of the year. Sumerlin finished with a double, walk and two runs scored while McGuire also tallied a pair of hits.
Georgia finished with 13 hits on the night off of three Kentucky pitchers, as starting pitcher Shannon Smith (5-2) took the loss after four hits, including the Sumerlin grand slam, in one frame of work. The Bulldog bats also didn't record a strikeout on the night.
Kylie Bass (5-0) tabbed the win after three innings of relief with four hits and two runs allowed while striking out three. Brittany Gray notched her first save after throwing a perfect seventh inning.
Kentucky reached the scoreboard in the first inning with a one-out home run from Katie Reed. Georgia responded by loading the bases with hits from Cortni Emanuel and Sydni Emanuel along with an Alyssa DiCarlo walk. Sumerlin then stepped up to hit her second grand slam of the season.
The Wildcats got one back in the third with a Georgia error before McGuire hit a 2-1 ball over the right field wall to make it a 6-2 game. Kentucky's Rachael Metzger posted one of her two home runs in the game in the fourth to make it 6-3 while an RBI single from Brea Dickey in the fifth added a run to the Georgia lead.
Metzger knocked out her second home run in the sixth, as the no out, two-run home run pulled the Cats within two, but Bass put the rest of the frame down in order while Gray shut down the Kentucky offense in the seventh.
The teams will meet for the rubber match on Monday night at 7 p.m. ET on SEC Network. The first 300 fans to Jack Turner Stadium will receive a free No. 6 jersey T-shirt.