A poor bullpen performance and a defensive collapse from the Hogs led to a 17-7 defeat at the hands of the Little Rock Trojans in their first ever game against the in-state school.
The Hogs committed a season-high four errors Tuesday, which led to seven unearned runs that would be detrimental to the team’s performance. Prior to the game, Arkansas had only allowed 13 unearned runs all season.
But errors were not the only problem. UALR bats were on fire as they tallied 16 hits, and seven Trojans had multi-hit games.
The Arkansas offense was solid, as junior infielder Jack Kenley went 2-for-2 with two walks and three RBI. He also hits his sixth home run of the season, tying him with sophomore shortstop Casey Martin for the team lead. Sophomore utility player Matt Goodheart also played well as he had another multi-hit game, going 2-for-5 with an RBI.
True freshman Patrick Wicklander started on the bump for the Hogs and pitched well, giving up three hits with five strikeouts and three unearned runs over 3.1 innings. When Wicklander left in the fourth, it seemed like the Hogs had the game under control as sophomore reliever Kole Ramage cleaned up the mess and kept the score at 6-3, but things only worsened from there.
Ramage and redshirt sophomore Marshall Denton gave up four runs each, and the Trojans jumped out to a commanding 12-6 lead after seven innings. To make things worse, the Trojans added five more runs in the last two innings to stretch their lead out to 17-7 as the Hogs’ bullpen woes continued in this double-digit loss at home.
Hog fans have not seen a loss this bad in their own stadium in a long time. The last time the Hogs gave up 15 or more runs at Baum-Walker Stadium was against Gonzaga University in March 2016. The last time the Hogs allowed 17 runs in a game was at No. 2 Florida in March 2018.
The Hogs will travel to Auburn for a three-game series against the Tigers starting at 6:30 p.m. Thursday.