The Arkansas Razorbacks baseball team entered Friday’s opener at the Shriners Hospital For Children College Classic in Houston, Texas ranked 18th in the nation and undefeated in 2016. After a thorough dismantling of the Texas Tech Red Raiders on Sunday, Dave Van Horn’s Arkansas side remains undefeated (8-0) and will undoubtedly move the NCAA’s D1 rankings.
Trailing 5-0 after one inning, the Razorbacks true to their name vociferously dug and clawed their way back into the ballgame. Meanwhile the Arkansas pitching staff was hurling eight and a third innings of one run baseball stranding 11 Red Raiders on the basepaths. Texas Tech twice left the bases loaded.
Timely hitting by Tech in the home half of the first paved the way for chasing Arkansas starter Keaton McKinney after just two-thirds of an inning. Lead-off hitter Cory Raley who singled to open the game scored on a double by Tyler Neslony sending Orlando Garcia who reached as a hitbatsmen to third. Following walks to Tanner Gardner and Ryan Long that forced home another run, second baseman Michael Davis sent McKinney’s final pitch of the day into the right-centerfield gap. scoring two. Leading 4-0, Raley batting for the second time in the inning beat out an infield hit to short scoring Long and the 5-0 lead.
In the top of the third, the Razorbacks began the comeback with a four spot. With Jake Arledge and Michael Bernal in scoring position and two down, Tech starter Ty Damron’s wild pitch scored Arledge and opened the flood gates. Carson Shaddy singled through the left side scoring Bernal. Clark Eagan tripled scoring Shaddy. Damron’s day was finished after Cullen Gassaway reached on a throwing error scoring Eagan to pull Arkansas to within one.
Arledge and Bernal were back at it again in the fourth. The junior outfielder from Huntington Beach, California singled and Bernal ripped his third home run in two days giving Arkansas a lead it would never relinquish at 6-5.
A sacrifice fly from Eric Cole made it 7-5 after four.
A solo shot in the fifth by Eagan extended the Arkansas lead to 8-5.Tech matched the run in the home half of the fifth with an RBI single from pinch-hitter Anthony Lyons but Arkansas would shut the Red Raiders down on three hits the rest of the way.
Arkansas with a two spot in the seventh on an RBI single from Rick Nomura and then the Razorbacks second baseman coming around to score on a wild pitch finished off the 10-6 win.
Undefeated Arkansas returns home for a 3:00p.m. tilt against Louisiana Tech on Wednesday March 2, 2016.
Texas Tech returns home to battle New Mexico State in Lubbock on Tuesday march 1, 2016. First pitch is set for 6:30p.m. CDT.