Fayetteville, Ark. – Trailing by two runs and fighting a curfew the Arkansas Razorbacks rallied for three runs in the bottom of the seventh to complete a series sweep of Kentucky with an 11-10 victory Sunday afternoon.Arkansas improved to 29-13 overall and 13-5 in the Southeastern Conference. Kentucky fell to 19-19 overall and 5-13 in the SEC.
Jay Sawatski (6-2) earned the win after pitching two-thirds of an inning allowing just one hit and striking out one. Sawatski was the sixth pitcher used by the Razorbacks on the day. It was his second win of the series after claiming the win Saturday.
Matt Scott (5-4) took the loss after allowing one run, unearned, on one hit in one-third of an inning of work. Scott was the sixth Wildcat pitcher used in the game.
After Kentucky took a 10-8 lead in the top of the seventh the Razorbacks were faced with their last at bat for the game in the bottom of the seventh. A 2:35 curfew was in place due to Kentucky’s travel schedule back to Lexington.
The Razorbacks took advantage of three Kentucky errors in the seventh to load the bases with one out.
Haas Pratt then hit into a fielder’s choice to second who forced pinch-runner Kern Watts out on the play, but allowed Danny Hamblin to score to make it a 10-9 game. The shortstop, J.B. Schmidt, threw wild to first attempting to double-off Pratt which allowed pinch-runner Stephen Robison to score and tie the game.
Casey Rowlett laced a single off the wall to score pinch runner Jason Deere from second for the game winning run. It was Rowlett’s career-best fourth hit of the day.
Kentucky jumped on Arkansas starter Daryl Maday in the first inning. Michael Bertram singled to open the game and Spencer Graeter followed with a two-run home run.
Two more singles and a hit batter loaded the bases with no outs and chased Maday after he failed to record an out. Boyd Goodner was called on to put a halt to the scoring.
Goodner then hit Mike Breyman to force another run home and give the ‘Cats a 3-0 lead. A single by Casey Gilvin plated two more run and pushed the lead to 5-0.
Goodner put an end to the inning when Bertram, who led off the inning, flied out at the wall in right field.
The Razorbacks answered in the bottom of the first. Danny Hamblin doubled and moved to third on Clay Goodwin’s single. Scott Hode then doubled off the wall in left to plate Hamblin and cut the lead to 5-1.
With two outs in the bottom of the first, Scott Bridges hit a fly ball to left that was missed by the centerfielder allowing Goodwin and Hode to score and make it a 5-3 game. Casey Rowlett flied out to end the inning after three runs had scored.
The Wildcats added to their lead in the third inning. Breyman doubled and was sacrificed to third by Schmidt. A fly out to center by Gilvin scored Breyman and gave Kentucky a 6-3 lead.
With two outs in the bottom of the third Bridges came through again, this time with a single up the middle to score Hamblin and Goodwin and make it a 6-5 game.
A pair of singles and a walk loaded the bases for the Razorbacks with no outs in the bottom of the fourth. The Wildcats, however, worked out of the jam with a pair of strikeouts and a fly out to end the inning without a run crossing the plate.
The Wildcats made it an 8-5 game with two-run home run in the top of the fifth. Breyman took Matt Stallings’ 1-0 pitch over the wall in right with Caleb Stewart aboard to give Kentucky a three run lead.
Brady Toops made it an 8-6 game with an RBI single to right in the bottom of the fifth inning. Rowlett doubled to center to begin the inning and then stole third before scoring on Toops’ hit.
Walks to Dugger and Hamblin loaded the bases for Goodwin who hit into a fielder’s choice that scored Toops and made it an 8-7 game. Kentucky stopped the rally when Hode grounded sharply to short who pitched to second for the force out on Goodwin to end the inning.
The second Kentucky error of the day tied the game for the Razorbacks in the bottom of the sixth. Bridges doubled and moved to third on a single by Rowlett. Toops then hit ground ball that the first baseman let roll under his glove allowing Bridges to score and tie the game at 8-8.
Kentucky scored two runs in the top of the seventh to take a 10-8 lead. Stewart singled and reached second after a throwing error by Devin Day on a Breyman’s fielder’s choice. A sac bunt by Schmidt put runners at second and third with one out.
After Gilvin was intentionally walked, Jesse Barber singled home a run for a 9-8 lead. Bertram then followed with a RBI single for a 10-8 lead which set up the Razorbacks’ heroics in the bottom of the seventh.
The Razorbacks return to action Tuesday with a road against Oral Roberts. Game time is set for 7 p.m.