HOOVER, Ala. – The 23rd-ranked University of Arkansas baseball team (28-18, 13-10) used a five-run fifth inning Friday evening to erase a two-run deficit and clinch its series at Alabama (23-23, 8-15) with an 8-4 victory at the Hoover Met.
Arkansas clinches its SEC-best sixth straight conference series with the victory, giving the Razorbacks six consecutive SEC series wins for the first time since the 2004 season when the team went on to advance to the College World Series.
The Razorbacks have only won seven straight conference series twice in school history, both coming in the Southwest conference in 1979 and 1990.
Arkansas continues to reel off wins, capturing its 14th victory over the last 18 games and winning the first two games of a series in back-to-back weekends.
After Alabama took a 2-0 lead in the third inning, Arkansas answered the call with six runs over the next two innings to take a commanding 6-2 lead. Clark Eagan stole home in the fourth frame to cut the lead in half, before the flood gates opened in the fifth with five runs, including a bases loaded two-run double from Joe Serrano and a two-run single from Tyler Spoon to fuel the rally.
The bullpen took over from there, as Jackson Lowery came on and worked 2.2 innings, giving up five hits and one unearned run, while striking out three.
Arkansas added a pair of insurance runs in the ninth inning thanks to a one-out double by Carson Shaddy, followed by RBI hits from Serrano and Andrew Benintendi to give the Razorbacks all the runs they would need in the four-run victory.
James Teague continued the bullpen dominance, working 2.1 innings and giving up just one run, while striking out three to earn his second save of the season. Dominic Taccolini got the start and worked 4.0 innings with six strikeouts.
Arkansas will go for its first SEC series sweep of the year Saturday afternoon with first pitch slated for 12:03 p.m. on ESPN2. Keaton McKinney will make his 12th start of the year for the Razorbacks.
- Arkansas is the only team in the league to win six consecutive SEC series this season.
- The Razorbacks have won nine of their last 11 games and 14 of 18 contests dating back to April 3.
- Arkansas has come from behind in seven of its 13 conference wins this year.
- The Razorbacks tallied double digit strikeouts for the 15th time this season and have struck out 26 batters in two games against Alabama.
- Andrew Benintendi has reached base safely in 19 straight games and has at least one hit in 17 of his last 19 games.
- Joe Serrano has reached base safely in 15 straight games and recorded his 14th multi-hit game of the year.
- Serrano recorded a three-RBI game for the fourth time this year.
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