Lead­ing with ease

Ra­zor­backs re­spond to Fri­day’s close call, cruise in 13-7 vic­tory over Bryant.

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - FRONT PAGE - MATT JONES


FAYET­TEVILLE — Ar­kan­sas Ra­zor­backs Coach Dave Van Horn wasn’t happy with how his team re­acted to a big in­ning in Fri­day’s vic­tory over Bryant.

On Satur­day, the Univer­sity of Ar­kan­sas got a sec­ond chance to show its coach it can play with a big lead.

The Ra­zor­backs scored eight runs in the third in­ning and cruised to a 13-7 vic­tory over Bryant in front of 3,814 at Baum Sta­dium. The Ra­zor­backs will at­tempt the se­ries sweep to­day at 1 p.m.

The Ra­zor­backs (5-0) led by seven runs af­ter a 10-run sixth in Fri­day’s vic­tory, but they had to work out of a bases-loaded jam in the ninth to win 11-8.

It wasn’t nearly as dif­fi­cult Satur­day as the Ra­zor­backs led by as many as 11 runs and never had their lead threatened.

“I think we re­sponded re­ally well,” Ra­zor­backs left fielder Jake Arledge said. “We had a big in­ning … and then we just kind of chipped a lit­tle bit away. That was the

dif­fer­ence. If we don’t do that, it’s a pretty close ball­game.”

Seven con­sec­u­tive bat­ters reached base dur­ing the third for the Ra­zor­backs, who sent 12 to the plate in the in­ning and led 10-0 when it was over.

Bryant starter Steve Theetge walked two and al­lowed dou­bles by Grant Koch and Do­minic Fletcher be­fore be­ing pulled with one out.

Jax Big­gers added a three­run dou­ble off Bryant re­liever Jack Ipsen to give the Ra­zor­backs a 7-0 lead. Jaxon Williams and Arledge also had RBI sin­gles in the in­ning, and Arledge scored on an er­ror by Bryant first base­man Chris Wright.

The Bull­dogs (2-4) com­mit­ted six er­rors. Three of the Ra­zor­backs’ runs were un­earned.

“You’ve got to take ad­van­tage of er­rors, and you’ve got to take ad­van­tage of get­ting more than three outs in an in­ning,” Van Horn said. “If you do that and you’re scor­ing, you’re go­ing to win a lot of games.”

Sopho­more Trevor Stephan had a strong start for the Ra­zor­backs in 52/ score­less in­nings. 3 The right-han­der al­lowed 2 hits, walked 4 and struck out 6 in a 103-pitch out­ing.

“I thought he threw real well,” Van Horn said. “His fast­ball was good, and he was around the zone the whole game. There were a cou­ple of at-bats where he was down 3-0 but came back and struck out a hit­ter.”

Sopho­more Isa­iah Camp­bell, who ini­tially was ruled out for the se­ries, was able to pitch for the first time Satur­day. Camp­bell, a pro­jected starter in the pre­sea­son, strug­gled with his ve­loc­ity dur­ing a 26-pitch out­ing in the sev­enth in­ning. He al­lowed three

runs on three hits and walked a bat­ter.

“He threw a light bullpen Wednes­day or Thurs­day, and the plan was to get him in an in­ning some time,” Van Horn said. “He was a lit­tle rusty be­cause he hasn’t pitched much for a few weeks. His stuff was ac­tu­ally pretty good. The ve­loc­ity was down a lit­tle bit,

but he got be­hind in the count and any time you get be­hind in the count, Divi­sion I hit­ters are go­ing to hit you a lit­tle bit. He’ll be a lot bet­ter next time.”

The Ra­zor­backs’ bullpen al­lowed seven runs to bring its week­end to­tal to 10. Af­ter scor­ing three times against Camp­bell, Bryant scored four runs against left-han­der We­ston

Rogers in the eighth in­ning.

Car­son Shaddy hit a tworun op­po­site-field home run in the sec­ond in­ning to give the Ra­zor­backs a 2-0 lead be­fore the big third pushed the lead to 10-0.

Theetge threw 21/ in­nings 3 and suf­fered his first loss in 13 ca­reer starts. The sopho­more left-han­der al­lowed 6 runs on 3 hits and walked 6 bat­ters for Bryant.

The Ra­zor­backs ex­tended their lead to 11-0 in the fifth when Arledge scored af­ter reach­ing on a dou­ble.

Arledge added a solo home run over the fence in left field in the eighth and fin­ished 3 of 4 with 2 RBI, and he was a triple shy of the cy­cle. He also walked and scored three runs.

“We need his pro­duc­tion,” Van Horn said. “He’s a good out­fielder, and we need him in the out­field a lit­tle more. We def­i­nitely need him to hit the left­ies.

NWA Demo­crat-Gazette/ANDY SHUPE

Ar­kan­sas Ra­zor­backs third base­man Car­son Shaddy (left) cel­e­brates with Do­minic Fletcher (cen­ter) and Jor­dan McFar­land af­ter hit­ting a two-run home run Satur­day

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