FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. –
No. 10 Arkansas overcame a sluggish effort Friday afternoon for a come-from-behind 6-5 win over Cal State Northridge in front of 2,832 fans at Baum Stadium.
The win improves the Razorbacks to 14-1 and extends their winning streak to five games. Northridge falls to 9-11 on the season.
Trailing 3-0, Danny Hamblin kick started the Hogs’ offense in the fifth inning with his fifth home run of the season – a two-run moon shot to left field. He finished the day 2 for 4, upping his batting average to .356 and extending his team- and SEC-leading RBI total to 24.
Hamblin extended his hitting streak to 13 games with the home run, and his RBI streak to 11 games. He has hit in 14-of-15 games this season and driven in a run in 13-of-15 games. Hamblin also leads the team in multiple-RBI games with eight.
Arkansas added three more runs in the sixth inning to take a 5-4 lead. David Hum doubled over the left-fielders head to open the inning and Matt Willard followed with a walk.
Craig Gentry, playing in his first game since Feb. 17, then ripped a triple into the left-center field gap to tie the game at 4-4. Pinch hitter James Ewing plated UA’s fifth run with a ground ball to shortstop.
The Hogs added their sixth run in the bottom of the eighth inning on back-to-back errors by Cal State Northridge.
Arkansas left-hander Nick Schmidt turned in his shakiest outing of the season, throwing 4.2 innings and giving up three runs on five hits. He struck out three and walked three. The five hits all came in the first two innings and equaled the total number of hits Schmidt had allowed in 26 innings this season entering the game.
Devin Collis (1-0), the Hogs’ third pitcher of the afternoon, earned the win with 2.1 innings of work. He allowed one run on two hits and did not issue a walk.
Daryl Maday notched his third save of the season by recording the final three outs of the game. Maday got CSUN pinch-hitter Kris Kasarjian to fly out to right field to end the game with Matador runners on first and second base.
Cal State Northridge’s starting pitcher Craig Baker took the loss to fall to 3-3 on the season. The right-hander allowed five runs – three earned – on eight hits over 5.1 innings of work. He struck out four and walked three.
Jake Dugger, David Hum and Blake Parker also collected two hits each in the Razorbacks’ nine-hit attack. Brett Blumenthal and Johnny Coit led the Matadors’ 10-hit day with two hits each. The top four spots in the CSUN lineup all drove in one run apiece. Leadoff hitter Jonathan Sakurai’s first-inning double was the first extra base hit off Arkansas’ Schmidt all season.
The Razorbacks and Matadors will play at 12:05 p.m. on Saturday to accommodate the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships taking place next door to Baum Stadium at the Randal Tyson Indoor Track Center. Friday’s game was also moved to 12:35 p.m. because of the track championships.