Ark. vs Texas Feb. 21

Junior Brady Slavens pumps his fist as he rounds the bases following a 3-run homer. Slavens drove in all four Arkansas runs with a pair of two-out hits. 

The Razorback baseball team picked up its second win in as many games with a swift defeat of the ninth-ranked Texas Longhorns on Sunday night at Globe Life Field. After a whirlwind of a game the night before, Arkansas used three pitchers, who surrendered only two hits, en route to a 4-0 win.

“Our pitching was a lot better today,” Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn said in a postgame press conference. “We just pitched well. We pitched ahead in the count, and we kept them off balance a little bit. We didn’t give them a big inning, we didn’t give them anything.

Sophomore right-handed pitcher Peyton Pallette looked strong in his first career start, striking out eight Texas hitters in more than four innings of work. In the fifth inning, he gave way to junior lefty Caden Monke, who retired two of the three hitters he faced to preserve a 1-0 Arkansas lead.

In the sixth inning, junior right-hander Caleb Bolden took the mound and never relinquished it.

“What I saw was a really good pitcher,” Van Horn said. “His stuff was good, and he did everything we wanted him to do.”

Bolden tacked on seven more strikeouts, bringing the count to 15, while allowing a mere two Longhorns to reach base in four innings.

“I had the mindset of ‘This is my ballgame, I’m going to finish it,’” Bolden said. “When I came out of the eighth inning, that’s what I told (pitching) Coach (Matt) Hobbs, I was like ‘I’m finishing this ballgame,’ and he was like “Yes, yes you are.’”

Texas pitchers had a fairly efficient night as well. Starter Tristan Stevens sat down the first 11 Razorbacks he faced before Arkansas staged a two-out rally in the bottom of the fourth inning. 

Senior first baseman Cullen Smith extended his hitting streak with a single to center and advanced to second on a wild pitch. The inning culminated with an RBI single by junior designated hitter Brady Slavens to put the Hogs on top.

Stevens hurled another 1-2-3 inning in the fifth, but issued two free passes in the sixth, ending his outing. Right-handed reliever Dawson Merryman recorded the second out of the inning, but Slavens came up with another clutch hit, taking him deep to right-center field for a 3-run homer.

“(The pitcher) tried to sneak a fastball by him and he got every bit of it,” Van Horn said.

Van Horn did not make anything of the Southwest Conference history between the two teams, calling it just another win, but Bolden acknowledged that it means a lot to the Arkansas fans.

“To have a shutout like this on the stage that it’s on is just huge,” Bolden said.

Southpaws Lael Lockhart and Austin Krob will start on the mound for the Hogs and TCU Horned Frogs, respectively, to wrap up the College Baseball Showdown at 6 p.m. Monday. TCU fell to No. 6 Ole Miss on Friday afternoon before besting No. 7 Mississippi State in the Sunday matinee game.

 

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