Gainesville, Fla. – Sophomore Charley Boyce paved the way for the Razorbacks as he held the 12th-ranked Florida Gators in check as Arkansas claimed an 8-2 victory Saturday evening.Arkansas improved to 15-7 overall and 1-1 in the Southeastern Conference. The Gators fell to 19-5 overall and 1-1 in the SEC.
Boyce (3-1) threw six innings giving up two runs, one earned, on seven hits. Boyce struck out five and did not walk a hitter.
Conner Falkenbach (5-1) took the loss after allowing four runs, all earned, on four hits in one inning of work.
The win evens the series against Florida and snaps the Gators’ seven-game winning streak over the Razorbacks.
The Razorbacks put runners in scoring position in the top of the second when Haas Pratt and Brady Toops had back-to-back singles to open the inning.
A sacrifice bunt by Blake Parker moved the runners to second and third. Brett Hagedorn plated Pratt with a ground out to second base for an early 1-0 Arkansas lead. Devin Day grounded out to short for the third out to leave Toops stranded at third.
Arkansas made it a 2-0 game in the third when Pratt hit a soft looper over the first baseman’s head that allowed Casey Rowlett to score from second. The Razorbacks missed a chance to add to their lead when Parker struck out looking with the bases loaded to end the inning.
The Gators put runners in scoring position in the bottom of the third after Adam Davis singled and Ben Harrison reached on an error by Brett Hagedorn at third. Boyce was called for a balk to put the runners at second and third.
Boyce got Jeff Corsaletti to strike out swinging for the second out and C.J. Smith to ground out to third to end the inning without a run scoring.
Florida loaded the bases with no outs in the bottom of the fourth after Boyce hit a batter, gave up a single and threw wild to first on a sac bunt by Brian Jeroloman.
Brian Leclerc plated the first Florida run with a sac fly to left that scored Stephen Barton from third. With runners at first at second, Jonathan Tucker hit into a fielder’s choice that forced Justin Tordi out at third for the second out of the inning.
Davis then delivered a two-out single to center to score Jeroloman from second and tie the game at 2-2. Boyce was able to get out of the inning when he got Harrison to fly out to right.
The Razorbacks put runners on the corners with one out in the sixth after Toops singled and Hagedorn reached on a fielder’s choice that forced Parker out at second.
Devin Day reclaimed the lead for Arkansas with a single to right that plated Toops. Scott Hode gave the Razorbacks a 5-2 lead with a triple to right that scored Hagedorn and Day.
Jake Dugger then hit a chopper over a drawn in infield that scored Hode from third and gave the Hogs a 6-2 advantage.
The Razorbacks added to their lead in the ninth when Hamblin scored after the Florida shortstop let a chopper get past him and roll into the outfield. Stephen Robison, who pinch ran for Pratt, moved to third on the play. Parker gave the Razorbacks the final 8-2 margin with a sac fly to center that scored Robison.
Arkansas and Florida conclude the series Sunday at 12:35 p.m. ET