Tuscaloosa, Ala. — Alabama broke open a tie game with a nine-run fourth inning to complete a series sweep of 15th-ranked Arkansas with a 14-2 victory and extend the Razorbacks’ losing streak in Tuscaloosa to 12 games.Arkansas dropped to 30-12 overall and 11-10 in the Southeastern Conference. Alabama improved to 31-13 overall and 12-9 in the SEC. The loss also extended Arkansas’ current losing streak to a season-long five games.
Josh Merryman (1-1) took the loss for Arkansas after surrendering five runs, all earned, on seven hits in three innings of work.
Seth Johnson (6-2) earned the win after throwing eight innings allowing two runs, earned, on six hits and striking out a career-best 11 batters.
The 14 runs and 18 hits allowed by Arkansas are a season high. The 12-run deficit is the worst loss for the Razorbacks since losing by 13 runs in 17-4 decision to Mississippi State on April 12, 2002.
Arkansas took the early lead as two runs crossed the plate in the top of the first inning. Kirk McConnell singled and moved to second when Andrew Wishy walked. McConnell was then forced out at third on a fielder’s choice by Haas Pratt. Clay Goodwin doubled to left-center to score Wishy and Pratt and give the Hogs a 2-0 lead.
Alabama tied the game on Bobby Burns’ two-run home run in the bottom of the third inning. Ryan Beagle walked to begin the inning and was followed by Burns who took Merryman’s 1-0 offering over the wall in right field to even the score.
The Crimson Tide broke the game open in the bottom of the fourth. The first three batters of the inning reached and scored with Al Hecklinski doubling home Beau Hearod. Beagle then singled up the middle to plate Zac Welch and Hecklinski for a 5-0 lead.
Burns then hit his second two-run home run of the day, this time to right field, as Alabama took a 7-0 lead.
Still in the fourth, Adam Pavkovich doubled down the right field line to score Travis Garner and Allen Rice to push the Bama advantage to 9-2. Nathan Meiners made it a 11-2 with a double to right that plated Pavkovich and Hearod.
The Tide added to its lead in the fifth. Burns singled and reached second when Caton Hall threw wild on a fielder’s choice hit by Garner. Rice then singled Burns home for a 12-2 lead. Alabama made it 13-2 when Pavkovich hit into a 6-4-3 double play that scored Garner.
Alabama tacked on an additional run in the bottom of the eighth after taking advantage of an Arkansas throwing error for the final 14-2 margin.
Scott Hode extended his hitting streak to 10 games, the second longest of the season for Arkansas.
The Razorbacks return to action Tuesday, April 29, with a 6:30 p.m. game against Missouri Southern at Baum Stadium. The game is a make-up from the season opener that was rained out. Tickets from the originally scheduled game will be accepted for the make-up game.