Wednesday, February 12, 2014

University of Kentucky Spring Sports

Samantha Stein, Marketing Intern

I can’t imagine a better college experience than what the University of Kentucky provides to its students. The spirit of being a Wildcat is infectious and “bleeding blue” isn’t a term we take lightly. Our school spirit comes not only from our basketball team, but from our other team sports as well. With fourteen different teams competing in the spring, it can be hard to keep up with all of them. Most of these teams have already started their spring seasons, but it is not too late to go and cheer them on. Below we have compiled a list of highlights and information you need to know this spring season.

  • Tickets are free for students, and games are played at Cliff Hagan Stadium! Their season starts on February 14.
  • The team has appeared in the NCAA Tournament seven times since 1949, and the team won the conference championships in 2006.
  • This season, Louisville Slugger and Collegiate Baseball named AJ Reed Preseason All American.
  • While watching Major League Baseball, keep an eye out for these UK Alumni: Jason Kipnis, Joe Blanton, Collin Cowgill, Scott Downs, and James Paxton.

  • Students must sign up for the ticket lottery, but after you have been selected to attend a game, tickets are just $5! Games are played in Rupp Arena. The SEC tournament begins March 12, and the first round of March Madness begins March 18.
  • Kentucky has the most all-time wins (2,123) and the highest all-time winning percentage (76%) in the history of college basketball.
  • John Calipari was named head coach at Kentucky in 2009, and since then has taken UK to two Final Fours, and has been named National Coach of the Year three times.
  • Julius Randle and James Young lead the team in points, Randle and Willie Cauley-Stein lead in rebounds, and both Andrew Harrison and Aaron Harrison top in assists.
  • There are more than 20 former Kentucky players currently on NBA rosters, including Anthony Davis, Terrence Jones, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Nerlens Noel, and Marquis Teague.

  • Tickets are free for students and the meets are played at the University Club of Kentucky Complex!
  • On January 21st, 2014, both team’s new 11,628 square-foot training facility opened.
  • For the men, senior Ben Stow recorded the fourth hole-in-one in tournament history during their final meet of 2013, where the team finished 3rd overall. The women were ranked 21st overall at the end of the 2013 fall season.
  • Notable UK golf alumni include current PGA Golfers J. B. Holmes and Steve Flesh, and current Champions Tour golfer Russ Cochran.
  • Tickets are free for students and the team competes in Barker Hall!
  • The UK Rifle team competes at both international and NCAA levels, and is one of the most advanced programs in the division.
  • This winter season, the highly ranked rifle team closed with sophomore Connor Davis winning gold at the 10m Air Rifle in the 2013 Winter Airgun Championships. And they opened their spring season ranked number two in their division.
  • Also this spring, UK alumni, Henri Junghänel, won the 2013 International Shooting Sports Federation Shooter of the Year award. 

  • Tickets are free for students and meets are held in Lancaster Aquatic Center!
  • This season will be newly appointed head coach Lars Jorgensen’s first season in the position.
  • The men’s team had a 22nd place national finish to end their 2013 season, during which Greg Ferruchi was the first diver to earn All-America honors in one season in three separate diving events.
  • Christa Cabot finished 13th and John Fox finished 27th in the preliminary round of the 3-meter competition at the 2013 USA Diving Winter National Championship.
  • Eric Bruck placed 21st overall in the 50-yard freestyle at the 2013 AT&T Winter National Championships.

  • Tickets are free for students and games are played in the Hilary J. Boone Varsity Tennis Complex!
  • When the men’s coach Cedric Kauffmann announced the 2014 roster, there was a lot of anticipation over three new players, who are top players in the country.
  • Last year, Ryuji Hirooka and Nils Ellefsen took the 2013 Louisville Invitational ‘A’ Doubles Championship, claiming the first doubles title of the fall season for the men’s tennis team.
  • Last season, Nadia Ravita received a singles at-large bid for the NCAA Women’s Tennis Championship. 

  •  Tickets are free for students and meets are held in the Shively Track and Field Stadium!
  • Edrick Floréal, the Wildcat track and field head coach, will coach the Wildcats through his second season this year. In the 2012-2013 season, the Wildcats earned 13 All-American honors, five individual SEC Championships, and had 10 All-SEC awardees.
  • For their first meet, Kentucky won six events, broke a school record, and multiple athletes broke their career-records at the first indoor-and-field meet of the season at the Hoosier Open.
  •  Dezerea Bryant has been listed on the watch list for the Bowerman Award, which is the collegiate track and field’s highest individual honor. 

  • Tickets are free for students and games are played in Memorial Coliseum!
  • The team has always had standout players, but together they have won one SEC championship and have appeared in the NCAA Tournament seven times.
  • The basketball team has a 100 percent graduation rate under Matthew Mitchell.
  • The women have celebrated their 700th win as a program and broke the record for game attendance this Spring 2014 season.
  •  While you’re watching WNBA, be sure to look for Victoria Dunlap, a Kentucky alumni, on the Washington Mystics. 

  •   Tickets are free for students and meets are held in Memorial Coliseum!
  •  Last year, the team turned their program history around by knocking off three conference opponents, posted a record regional qualifying score, and won the prestigious “Team of the Year” award at the CATSPY Awards. “The CATSPY Awards has become the highlight and finale of each academic year and features student-athletes from all 22 sports,” (UK Athletics).
  • To open their spring season, the gymnastics team was ranked number 21 and defeated three teams to win the annual Excite night at the Kentucky Classic event in Memorial Coliseum.
  • This season, of the 21 televised SEC gymnastics meets, UK will be featured in five of the broadcasts. 

Being a student will get you into most of these events for free! Be sure to take advantage of the opportunities you have while at UK to see these amazing athletes in motion. If you are not a student or a member of the faculty or staff of the University of Kentucky, additional ticket information can be found
here. While attending the events, be sure to wear your UK blue and white and cheer loudly! C-A-T-S CATS CATS CATS!

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