NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The No. 16 University of Arkansas baseball team saw a late lead slip away as No. 5 Vanderbilt rallied for four runs in the ninth inning before picking up an 8-7 victory in 12 innings in game one of a doubleheader Saturday afternoon at Hawkins Field.
After falling behind 2-0 in the first inning on a long ball by the Commodores, Arkansas came right back in the second inning and showed off some power of its own, smacking back-to-back solo home runs to knot the score 2-2.
Rick Nomura provided the first homer down the right field line, while Bobby Wernes followed with a shot to left-center to quiet the Vanderbilt crowd.
Arkansas would go on to score three runs in the fourth and single runs in the eighth and ninth innings to take a 7-3 lead with three outs to get.
The Commodores would save their rally for the ninth inning however, scoring four runs to knot the score 7-7 and force extra innings.
Vanderbilt had a chance to win the game in the 10th inning with runners on second and third with one out, but the Commodores tried to score on a fly out to right field and Tyler Spoon had other ideas. Spoon made the catch down the line and fired a strike home to Shaddy who fielded the one-hopper and missed the diving runner who missed home plate and danced around in the circle. Shaddy missed another tag and flipped the ball to a waiting Stone who tagged the runner for the final out of the inning.
Vanderbilt would go on to win the 12th inning on a walk-off one-out double.
Clark Eagan finished the game with three hits, while Chad Spanberger went 2-for-4 with a double, triple and two runs batted in. Stone (0-2) was tagged with the loss in relief.
Game two of the series and doubleheader is slated to start at 6:45 p.m. at Hawkins Field.
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- Arkansas hit back-to-back home runs in the second inning with Rick Nomura and Bobby Wernes for the first time since Matt Reynolds and Sam Bates did so against Binghamton on March 10, 2012.
- The Razorbacks’ back-to-back bombs off Vanderbilt starter Carson Fulmer marked just the third and fourth home runs he has allowed in his 172.0 innings of work in college.
- Arkansas hit multiple home runs in a game for the sixth time this season.
- The five runs Arkansas scored against Fulmer is the most he has ever given up in his career.
- The Razorback pitching staff recording double-digit strikeouts for the eighth time this season, striking out a season-high 15 batters.
- Arkansas recorded double-digit hits for the ninth time this year.
- Bobby Wernes extended his hitting streak to six games, tying his career-high.