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Razorbacks Sweep SEC Opponent For First Time Since 2013

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After dominating the series finale, 8-2, the No. 23 Arkansas softball team (27-6, 4-4) swept the No. 20 Mississippi State Bulldogs (28-8, 3-5) at Bogle Park on April 1, the first swept of a Southeastern Conference foe since 2013.

Even though Razorback freshman pitcher Mary Haff started in the circle, sophomore pitcher Autumn Storms played for the majority of the game. Storms allowed three hits and zero runs, and Haff allowed four hits and two runs. For the Bulldogs, freshman pitcher Emily Williams started, but senior pitchers Holly Ward and Casady Knudsen played the most innings. Ward played for four innings, allowing six runs, six hits and six errors, and Knudsen played two innings, allowing three hits, two runs and two errors.

Storms was excited to be able to pitch in back-to-back games.

“I think I was just motivated,” Storms said. “The last time I went back-to-back days, I didn't have the best outing. That pushed me to make sure I had a good outing.”

As with the other two games, the Razorbacks each played well. Senior third basemen Autumn Buczek, freshman catcher Kayla Green and senior left fielder Tori Cooper each had a hit, while junior infielder Katie Warrick, junior second basemen Haydi Bugarin and senior shortstop A.J Belans each had two hits.

For the Razorbacks, the first run was scored during the bottom of the second. After Cooper was flied out by Bulldog junior center fielder Kat Moore, senior center fielder Loren Krzysko was able to still score.

After falling behind the Bulldogs, the Hogs came back in the bottom of the fourth. After a single from Belans, Cooper redeemed herself by scoring a run of her own. For Belans, she completed her trip around the bases after a walk to freshman right fielder Hannah McEwen. After another walk, this time to junior first basemen Ashley Diaz, Bugarin continued to lead the Razorbacks ahead. After one more single from Warrick, Buczek got the last one for the inning.

To finally put the game out of reach for the Bulldogs, Warrick hit her seventh homer during the bottom of the sixth. After eight fouls, she hit the ball straight to center field and over the fence. McEwen also scored off her homer.

“I saw a lot of good pitches,” Warrick said. “I was just trying to put a good swing on it.”

During the top of the third, Mississippi State briefly took the lead. Freshman catcher Mia Davidson, who leads the Bulldogs with a .430 average, hit her 13th home run over left field. Senior Morgan Bell also hit a homer for the Bulldogs after Davidson.

Statically for the Bulldogs, Davidson, senior second basemen Calyn Adams and junior left fielder Emily Heimberger each had a hit, and Bell lead the team with two hits.

Arkansas coach Courtney Deifel was proud of the hard work that the team had this series, she said.

“I’m just really happy for our team,” Deifel said. “It’s exciting when you get a sweep.”

The Razorbacks will travel to Columbia, South Carolina, to take on the No. 9 Gamecocks in their next series. The first game will be April 6 at 5 p.m. As for the Bulldogs, their next series is home in Starkville against the Texas A&M Aggies.

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