Saturday recaps; Arkansas rallies past Auburn again; Vandy sweeps LSU
Barry Allen • 4/4/2021 in Baseball
(Anissa Dimilta/Florida Athletics)
Vanderbilt (23-3, 8-1 SEC) has raced out to the best record in the SEC after its first-ever sweep at LSU. The Commodores have won 15 straight SEC road games, dating back to 2019. LSU is 1-8 in SEC play for the first time since 1969. Arkansas turned a 5-0 deficit into a 6-5 walk off win against the Auburn bullpen. Tennessee won its sixth extra-inning game of the season with an 11-inning win at Alabama. South Carolina belted four home runs in the 13-7 win at Georgia. Missouri won its first SEC series since 2019 with a series win over Texas A&M. Mississippi State completed its sweep of Kentucky with a one-run win.
TEAM OF THE DAY:
Missouri picked up its first SEC series win since 2019 as it took two of three from the Texas A&M Aggies. The Tigers had not won an SEC series since taking two of three from Tennessee on May 3-5, 2019. After dropping the opener 16-2 on Thursday, Missouri rebounded to win the next two games.
GAME OF THE DAY:
Arkansas rallied from another late-inning deficit for a 6-5 walk off win in 10 innings. The Razorbacks outscored the Tigers 6-0 over the final five innings for the win. On Friday, Arkansas trailed 4-0 in the seventh inning and rallied for the 6-5 win. Arkansas outscored Auburn 10-1 from the seventh inning on in the series.
PLAYER OF THE DAY:
Florida second baseman Jordan Carrion pulled double duty on Saturday for the Gators. Carrion hit a solo home run in the fourth inning and then moved to mound, where he retired five of the seven batters he faced with one strikeout in the win over Ole Miss. It was his fifth appearance on the mound this season and first in an SEC game. The game marked the second time this season that Carrion was used as a two-way player. The other came against Samford on Feb. 27.
PITCHER OF THE DAY:
Arkansas relief pitcher Kevin Kopps had three scoreless appearances in the Auburn series. The right-hander retired 15 of the 18 batters he faced in the series with 11 strikeouts. He retired three of the four batters he faced in Saturday’s series-clinching win. He worked a three-up, three-down ninth inning on Friday to earn his third save. He opened the series with three scoreless innings on Thursday. He struck out eight of the 11 batters he faced.
Arkansas 6, Auburn 5 (Fayetteville)
Records: Arkansas (22-4, 7-2 SEC); Auburn (12-13, 1-8 SEC)
Series: Arkansas won series, 2-1
For the second straight day, Arkansas rallied from another late-inning deficit for a 6-5 walk off win in 10 innings.
The Razorbacks trailed 5-0 in the sixth inning. Auburn left fielder Judd Ward stroked a two-run homer in the first inning and first baseman Tyler Miller blasted a three-run homer in the sixth inning to give the Tigers a 5-0 lead.
Arkansas outscored the Tigers 6-0 over the final five innings for the win. On Friday, Arkansas trailed 4-0 in the seventh inning and rallied for the 6-5 win. Arkansas outscored Auburn 10-1 from the seventh inning on in the series.
The Auburn bullpen allowed 10 earned runs in seven innings the last two days. Trace Bright was charged with the loss on Saturday. He allowed one run one two hits in two-thirds of an inning in the extra innings loss. He was tagged for three runs in one inning of work in Friday’s game.
The Razorbacks scored in each of the last three innings in Saturday’s win. First baseman Brady Slavens had a game-tying sac fly in the ninth inning and centerfielder Christian Franklin had the walk off single in the 10th inning.
Vanderbilt 11, LSU 2 (Baton Rouge)
Records: LSU (17-11, 1-8 SEC); Vanderbilt (23-3, 8-1 SEC)
Series: Vanderbilt won series, 3-0
Vanderbilt posted its 15th straight SEC road win and completed its first-ever sweep of LSU in Baton Rouge with a 5-4 win.
Shortstop Carter Young and right fielder Jack Bulger homered in the win. Young belted a two-run homer in the third inning to put the Commodores in front 2-1. Bulger snapped a 3-3 tie with a two-run homer in the seventh inning to give Vandy a 5-3 lead.
Young and Bulger both homered in Friday’s blowout win. For the weekend, the duo were a combined 9-for-25 (.360) with six runs scored, four home runs and 10 RBIs.
Left fielder Gavin Dugas homered for the LSU.
The Commodores have the best record in the SEC after three weekends.
LSU is 1-8 in SEC play for the first time since 1969. The Tigers have dropped their first SEC series for the first time since 2006.
Alabama 7, Tennessee 4 (Tuscaloosa)
Records: Alabama (16-10, 2-6 SEC); Tennessee (23-5, 6-2 SEC)
Series: Series tied, 1-1
Tennessee worked its extra-inning magic once again.
The Volunteers scored four runs in the top of the 11th inning to defeat Alabama 8-4 and even the weekend series.
Tennessee improved to an SEC-best 6-0 in extra innings this season and has won its last seven extra-inning games dating back to 2019.
The Vols scored four runs on three walks, two infield hits and sac fly against a depleted Crimson Tide bullpen.
Left fielder Evan Russell drew a bases-loaded walk to plate the go-ahead run in the inning. Logan Steenstra added a sac fly and Pete Derkay had a bunt single to score another run. Russell scored the final run when Derkay was caught in a run-down between first and second base.
Grayson Hitt, the sixth of seven pitchers used by Alabama, took the loss. He allowed four earned runs and only recorded one out.
Alabama forced extra innings with a pair of RBI singles from Drew Williamson and Andrew Pinckney in the eighth inning.
Camden Sewell, who blew the save in the eighth, worked 3 2/3 scoreless innings for the win.
William Hamiter hit his first career home run for Alabama in the fourth inning.
Tennessee took a 4-1 lead in the seventh inning, capped by Connor Pavolony’s two-run single.
Florida 6, Ole Miss 5 (Gainesville)
Records: Ole Miss (21-6, 7-2 SEC); Florida (18-9, 5-4 SEC)
Series: Florida won series, 2-1
Florida jumped out to an early lead and then held off Ole Miss in the late innings for a 6-5 series-clinching win.
The Gators scored their first two runs on a pair of sacrifice flies, but three of the next four runs came on the long ball.
Second baseman Jordan Carrion belted a solo home run in the fourth inning and designated hitter Nathan Hickey belted a two-run homer in the sixth inning. Hickey finished 2-for-3 with a home run and three RBIs.
Ole Miss catcher Hayden Dunhurst had a two-run double in the seventh to cut the lead to 6-5, but the Rebels got no closer.
South Carolina 13, Georgia 3 (Athens)
Records: Georgia (18-8, 3-5 SEC); South Carolina (18-7, 5-3 SEC)
Series: Series tied, 1-1
South Carolina belted four home runs in its 13-7 win at Georgia.
The middle of the order did most of the damage against the Bulldogs.
Left fielder Josiah Sightler, designated hitter Wes Clarke and right fielder Andrew Eyster went 6-for-14 with six runs scored, three home runs and five RBIs.
Nine-hole hitter George Callil put the Gamecocks on the board with a two-run homer in the second inning. He finished 2-for-3 with two runs, one double, one home run and two RBIs.
Right fielder Connor Tate and third baseman Parks Harber homered for Georgia.
South Carolina pitchers Brannon Jordan and Brett Kerry combined for 15 strikeouts.
Mississippi State 3, Kentucky 2 (Starkville)
Records: Kentucky (18-7, 5-4 SEC); MSU (20-7, 5-4 SEC)
Series: MSU won series, 3-0
Mississippi State completed the series sweep with a 4-3 win over Kentucky.
Designated hitter Luke Hancock and catcher Logan Tanner homered in the win. Hancock hit a solo home run in the second inning and Tanner added a solo homer in the fourth. Hancock had five RBIs in the series.
MSU used six pitchers in the win with starter Jackson Fristoe picking up his third win. He worked five innings and allowed two runs and three hits with eight strikeouts and four walks. Parker Stinnett worked a scoreless ninth for his first save.
Kentucky second baseman Aaron Schultz had two hits, including an RBI double.
Missouri 7, Texas A&M 3 (Columbia)
Records: Missouri (10-17, 3-6 SEC); Texas A&M (19-11, 3-6 SEC)
Series: Missouri won series, 2-1
Missouri appeared to be headed for another SEC series loss following Thursday’s 16-2 loss to Texas A&M.
However, the Tigers rebounded nicely and won the next two games to clinch its first SEC series win since 2019.
The Tigers had not won an SEC series since taking two of three from Tennessee on May 3-5, 2019.
Centerfielder Ty Wilmsmeyer and first baseman Torin Montgomery accounted for all five runs in the decisive sixth inning. Wilmsmeyer gave the Tigers a 4-3 lead with a two-run single. Montgomery slammed a three-run home run to push the lead to 7-3.
Missouri relievers Jacob Kush and Connor Ash logged five scoreless innings and struck out six.
Texas A&M left fielder Ryan Targac belted two home runs in the loss.