Willis’ girlfriend helped him regain basketball confidence

Keely Potts (Larry Vaught/Verizon Photo)

Keely Potts (Larry Vaught/Verizon Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Sometimes the best Kentucky stories I do are about what an athlete does off the court or field. I like telling behind the scenes story.

That’s why I liked writing about Keely Potts finding a way to help her boyfriend, UK junior Derek Willis, regain his confidence during the basketball season.

It’s my most recent story on lex18.com and one I hope you will check out and enjoy. I will have more with Keely on her insights into Willis, who could be a huge key for UK next season, coming up soon.

Gran likes way that Drew Barker is not panicking

Vicky Graff Photo

Vicky Graff Photo

By LARRY VAUGHT

Offensive coordinator Eddie Gran senses that sophomore quarterback Drew Barker is more comfortable in the pocket daily.

“He’s stepping up; he’s not panicking,” said Gran.

He likes the way Barker is progressing with his checks in the red zone.

“I think he’s got a chance to be a really good quarterback in this league. I really do, because he wants to be great. He’s really locked into what we’re doing. He’s trying to be a sponge; he’s trying to do everything right. It’s frustrating for him when he doesn’t. But that’s what you want your quarterback to do and I think he’s being a leader at the same time,” Gran said.

UK signee’s family will not press charges over Twitter death threat

Sacha Killeya-Jones with his brother and girlfriend

Sacha Killeya-Jones with his brother and girlfriend

By LARRY VAUGHT

Ley Killeya-Jones says the death threat made against her son, Kentucky basketball signee Sacha Killeya-Jones, on Twitter was “horrific” and she hopes no other parent has to endure something like that.

The threat was posted in response to a picture Sacha Killeya-Jones posted on Twitter during the McDonald’s All-American Game with UK’s other signees. They were giving the “L’s Down” to show their feeling already about the Kentucky-Louisville rivalry.

That prompted some anticipated angry remarks from Louisville fans that Ley understood, but not the death threat. She happened to see it when she checked her son’s Twitter account.

Kelsey Nunley’s second shutout of series beats LSU 2-0

BATON ROUGE, La. – Hours after being named the Southeastern Conference’s Pitcher of the Week, senior pitcher Kelsey Nunley sparkled again in the circle, throwing a complete-game shutout, her second of the series, to cap off a road sweep of the No. 8 LSU Tigers in Baton Rouge, La., for the first time in program history as the Wildcats downed LSU 2-0 on Monday night.

The 15th-ranked Wildcats came into Baton Rouge over the weekend and shutout the No. 8 team in the country on the road for three-straight games – marking the first time in program history that Kentucky has ever shutout a team in an SEC series.

Kelsey Nunley SEC Pitcher of the Week

uk_auburn_softball_2016_006_bdhBATON ROUGE, La. – After a complete-game shutout win over No. 8 LSU on the road in Baton Rouge, La., University of Kentucky senior pitcher Kelsey Nunley was named the Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Week, it was announced by the league office on Monday morning.

Nunley went the distance on Saturday night, helping Kentucky earn a 1-0 win over the Tigers in the series opener. The Soddy Daisy, Tenn., native struck out six LSU batters and lowered her ERA on the season to 1.03. She now has a 14-4 overall record in 2016 and leads the Kentucky staff with over 120 strikeouts on the season.

James Ulis on UK coaches: “They taught him how to be a professional”

James Ulis (Vicky Graff Photo)

James Ulis (Vicky Graff Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

When Tyler Ulis announced he was leaving Kentucky for the NBA, his father, James, repeated a them that has become common for players leaving college early.

“I thought Cal and Coach (Kenny) Payne who acted as a father to him while he was here – We had several conversations or a few over the last couple of years. I think they taught him how to be a professional,” James  Ulis said.

Kentucky baseball recap

UK baseballKENTUCKY BASEBALL

Weekend Update

Overall Record: 22-9, 8-4 SEC

Record Last Week: 2-1, 2-1 SEC

Last 5, Last 10 Games: 4-1, 7-3

Recent Results

Wednesday, April 6 * postponed vs. No. 4 Louisville

Friday, April 8 * won vs. Alabama, 3-2

Saturday, April 9 * won vs. Alabama, 6-2

Sunday, April 10 * lost vs. Alabama, 1-2

Upcoming Schedule (times Eastern)

Tuesday, April 12 * vs. Eastern Kentucky * 6:30 p.m. [SEC Network +]

Wednesday, April 13 * vs. No. 4 Louisville * 6:30 p.m.

Despite expectations, Denzil Ware feels no pressure

By LARRY VAUGHT

Kentucky sophomore Denzil Ware knows a lot is expected of him during UK’s 2016 football season and that’s fine with him.

“I don’t feel no pressure. If you come here, you’ve got to become a man,” said Ware. “I am not a little boy any more. It’s not like high school. I don’t see any pressure. I just go out and play.”

He’s actually one of the more experienced linebackers returning at UK after the off-season dismissal of Jason Hatcher.

Prince’s shutout, Steed’s two-out hit lead UK over No. 8 LSU 3-0

BATON ROUGE, La. – Behind a complete-game shutout from junior pitcher Meagan Prince and a clutch two-out two-RBI single from senior Maisie Steed, the No. 15 Kentucky softball team clinched a series win on the road in Baton Rouge for the first time in program history, as the Wildcats downed the No. 8 Tiger, 3-0.

Prince got the win with another impressive performance in the circle, to move her record to 15-2 on the year. Prince threw 116 pitches in the game, with 79 of them recorded as strikes. The Martin, Tenn., native went the distance allowing just five hits and three walks, with five strikeouts. Her ERA now drops to 1.59 on the season. LSU’s Allie Walljasper picked up the loss on Sunday night to drop to 6-5 overall on the season.

Wanted — leaders for the Kentucky offense

By LARRY VAUGHT

Who is going to be the on field leader for the Kentucky offense?

Don’t ask new offensive coordinator Eddie Gran because after Saturday’s scrimmage, he made it clear he was still looking for team leaders.

“When things go down, you can’t be up, down, up, down. Once something goes down, get them back consistent and be a leader. Who was that guy. I didn’t hear a soul out there. So absolutely. We’ve got to find those leaders and we’ve got to find them fast,” Gran said.

Gran says he sees players with potential to fill the leadership void.