STARKVILLE, Miss. – Ryne Stanek
and Cade Lynch
combined for a three-hit shutout as the third-ranked Arkansas baseball team blanked Mississippi State 8-0 on Saturday afternoon at Dudy Noble Field.
With the win, the Razorbacks improved to 21-3, 4-1 in the Southeastern Conference, while Mississippi State dropped to 16-8 and 2-3 in league play.
Stanek was masterful on the mound for the Razorbacks to improve to 6-0 on the season and run his winning streak to eight dating back to last season. The sophomore right hander tossed 6.1 scoreless innings, giving up just three hits and striking out six.
Lynch finished up the shutout by pitching 2.2 shutout innings. Lynch retired all eight batters he faced, striking out two. The shutout was the fifth of the season for the Razorback pitching staff.
Mississippi State starter Nick Routt took the loss to drop to 1-3 on the season. Routt allowed two runs on seven hits and struck out eight in 4.2 innings.
Five players in the Arkansas starting lineup had at least two hits in the win. Matt Reynolds
drove in a game-high three runs and went 3-for-5 in the win. Tim Carver
went 2-for-4 with two RBI. Dominic Ficociello
and Jacob Mahan
each drove in a run and added two hits, while Derrick Bleeker
also added two hits.
Seven of Arkansas’ nine starters recorded at least one hit as the Razorback offense had 14 hits in the win. The top four batters in the Razorback lineup combined to 9-for-19 with seven RBI and four runs scored.
Sam Frost, Trey Porter and Hunter Renfroe each had one hit to account for the three Bulldog base hits in the game.
After a quiet first four innings, Arkansas struck first with two runs in the top of the fifth. Jacob Morris
drew a leadoff walk and then moved to second after a successful sacrifice bunt by Carver. After a strike out of Mahan for the second out of the inning, Ficociello provided a two-out RBI single to center field to score Morris for the game’s first run. Reynolds followed that up with a clutch hit of his own, doubling into left field to bring home Ficociello and put Arkansas in front 2-0.
The Razorbacks broke the game open with six runs in the top of the sixth inning. A walk to Jake Wise
, an infield single by Bleeker and a walk to Morris loaded the bases with nobody out. Carver then drove in a pair of runs with a single to center field. Morris and Carver then executed a double steal to move up to third and second. The catcher’s throw to third was high and went into left field, allowing Morris to score and moving Carver to third. Mahan brought home Carver with a single to right field to make the score 6-0. Ficociello then laid down a bunt single up the third base line and the third baseman’s throw to first was wild, allowing Mahan to advance to third on the error. Reynolds scored both Mahan and Ficociello with a double to the gap in right-center field to put the Razorbacks on top 8-0.
Stanek and Lynch took care of the rest for Arkansas, completing the shut out of Mississippi State over the final four innings to give the Razorbacks an 8-0 win.
The three-game weekend series wraps up on Sunday afternoon at 12 p.m. Arkansas will start junior left hander Randall Fant
(1-1, 4.82), while Mississippi State will start junior righty Kendall Graveman (2-0, 2.30). The series finale will be televised by FSN and SportSouth.