FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas centerfielder Craig Gentry ripped a two-out double of the left-center field wall in the top of the ninth inning and Devin Collis retired LSU in the bottom half of the inning to secure a 4-2 win for the No. 11 Razorbacks on Saturday afternoon in front of 2,304 fans at Alex Box Stadium.
On a day where the wind was blowing out to left field at 30-35 mph, the Hogs allowed just six LSU hits to improve to 31-13 on the season and 11-9 in SEC play. LSU drops to 28-17 on the year and 7-13 in league action.
Collis got a little redemption Saturday after taking the loss on Friday night. He pitched the final two innings to run his record to 6-1 on the season. Collis allowed just one hit while walking two and striking out one.
After earning the win last night for the Tigers, Arkansas roughed up the LSU reliever Jonathan Wilhite in the top of the ninth inning. Brian Walker led off the inning with a walk and was replaced by pinch-runner Stephen Robison. Wilhite was able to retire the next to Razorbacks, but Robison moved into scoring position by stealing second base on Matt Willard’s striking.
Gentry then delivered his double off the wall in left-center to put the Hogs on top 3-2. Jake Dugger followed with RBI single to right field to give UA a 4-2 lead. Wilhite (1-1) gave up two runs on two hits in one inning of work.
LSU’s staring pitcher Louis Coleman worked 7.2 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits. He walked two and struck out three, while working the outside part of the plate all afternoon.
The Razorbacks tied things up at 2-2 in eight on David Hum’s two-out RBI singled to right-center field. Wilhite then came on in relief of Coleman and got Chris Hollensworth to fly out deep to right field to end the inning.
Arkansas staring pitcher Trey Holloway didn’t have it on Saturday as he allowed two hits and two walks and his day ended after just five batters. He pitched one-third of an inning, allowing two hits and two walks, the second of which forced in the Tigers’ first run.
Daryl Maday came on for Holloway and got LSU first baseman Jordan Mayer to ground into a 5-4-3 double play to end the inning and the Tiger threat. Four UA relievers pitched the final 8.2 innings on Saturday, allowing just one unearned run on four hits.
Maday worked a season-high 4.1 innings, allowing just one unearned run on two hits. He struck out four and walked two on 56 pitches.
Danny Hamblin knotted things up at 1-all in the fourth inning with a monstrous home run to left field. The home run would have left any ballpark, but with the wind blowing out at 30-plus mph, it landed in an apartment complex’s parking lot well beyond the left-field bleachers. It was Hamblin’s 13th home run of the season and his 57th RBI.
LSU took the lead off Maday in the bottom of the fifth inning with the help of two singles and a throwing error by third baseman Blake Parker. LSU’s Bruce Sprowl plated the run on a two-out single to left field. Chris Rhoads came on for Maday and got T.J. Wise looking on a 3-2 breaking ball to end the inning.
Dugger and Hum both collected two hits each with an RBI, while Gentry, Hamblin, Chris Hollensworth, Walker and Parker rounded out the Hogs’ nine-hit attack with one hit each.
The rubber match is set for 1:07 p.m. Sunday from Alex Box Stadium in Baton Rouge, La. Shaun Seibert will go to the hill for Arkansas, while LSU has Michael Bonura penciled in for the start.
The game can be seen on Cox Sports, channel 119 on Cox digital cable in Northwest Arkansas.