HOOVER, Ala. – The 20th-ranked and fifth-seeded University of Arkansas baseball team (35-20) used ninth inning home runs from Andrew Benintendi and Bobby Wernes to complete a comeback 7-6 victory and knock off seventh-ranked and fourth-seeded Florida (40-16) Wednesday on day two of the SEC Tournament at the Hoover Met.
No. 5 Arkansas will advance in the winners’ bracket to play No. 1 LSU Thursday in Game 12 of the SEC Baseball Tournament at 8 p.m. on SEC Network.
SEC Player of the Year Benintendi opened the ninth inning with a solo homer to right field and brought the Razorbacks to within one run of the Gators with his league-leading 18th home run of the year. Wernes followed with the at-bat of a lifetime and took the 12th pitch of his plate appearance and launched a two-run blast to left field to give Arkansas a 7-6 lead and send the Razorbacks into a frenzy.
Zach Jackson came on in the ninth inning and struck out Jeremy Vasquez to strand the tying run on third and give Arkansas a comeback victory for the history books. Jackson earned his sixth save of the year, while Jackson Lowery moved to 6-1 on the year after working a scoreless relief inning.
Arkansas has won its first two game of the SEC Tournament of the sixth time in program history and for the third straight year. The Razorbacks will look to win their first three games of the championship for the third time since 1998.
- Arkansas has won its first two games of the SEC Tournament for the sixth time in program history and for the third consecutive year.
- The Razorbacks have won 20 of their last 25 games and 10 of the last 11 road games.
- Arkansas improves to 28-35 all-time in SEC Tournament games.
- The Razorbacks improve to 2-2 all-time against Florida in the SEC Tournament.
- Arkansas improves to 28-26 against Florida and have won four of the last six meetings in the all-time series.
- The Razorbacks have hit multiple homers in 14 games with the pair of ninth-inning blasts.
- Joe Serrano extended his reached base streak to 24 games.
- Andrew Benintendi’s ninth-inning homer was his SEC-leading 18th of the year and put him off the national lead.
- Benintendi has reached base safely in 27 of the last 28 games and hit safely in 11 of the last 12 contests.
- Bobby Wernes collected his 19th multi-hit game of the year and seventh multi-RBI game of the season.
- Zach Jackson claimed his sixth save of the year and has struck out 70 batters in 48 innings.
For more information on Arkansas baseball, follow @RazorbackBSB on Twitter.