Columbia, S.C. – Tied 1-1 in the top of the seventh inning, the Arkansas Razorbacks scored three runs to come away with a 4-1 victory over the sixth-ranked South Carolina Gamecocks and complete a doubleheader sweep Sunday afternoon.Arkansas improved to 16-2 overall and 2-1 in the Southeastern Conference, while the Gamecocks fell to 15-5 overall and 1-2 in the SEC.
The Razorbacks and Gamecocks were forced to play a pair of seven-inning contests Sunday after rain forced the postponement of Saturday’s game.
In game two, Brett Hagedorn gave the Razorbacks a 1-0 lead with a solo home run in the top of the first inning. It was Hagedorn’s first home run of the season.
The Gamecocks tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the third when Kevin Melillo hit a sacrifice fly to center that plated Justin Harris.
Razorback starter Jarrett Gardner held the Gamecocks in check, limiting South Carolina to four hits in the game. Gardner (3-0) earned the win, going the distance and surrendering one unearned run. Gardner also had four strikeouts in the game.
With the score tied at 1-1 in the top of the seventh, pinch-hitter Scott Bridges reached on a fielder’s choice and advanced to third on Brady Toops’ single. With one out, Scott Hode hit a flied out to left, allowing Bridges to score and give the Hogs a 2-1 lead.
Nick Pitts then blasted a two-run home run to centerfield to give the Razorbacks a 4-1 lead. It was Pitts’ second home run of the season.
Gardner gave up a lead-off single in the bottom of the seventh, but forced Landon Powell into a double-play to clear the bases. Gardner then got Trey McDaniel to fly out to left to end the game.
Aaron Rawl (4-1) took the loss for South Carolina after allowing three run, all earned, on three hits in two innings of work.
In game one, Clint Brannon, Caton Hall and Jay Sawatski combined to hold the Gamecocks to three hits as the Razorbacks posted a 2-1 victory.
The win gave Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn the 600th of his career and brought the Razorbacks to 15-2 overall and 1-1 in the SEC. South Carolina dropped to 15-4 overall and 1-1 in the league.
Brannon (1-0) earned his first win of the season after throwing five and two-thirds innings. Brannon gave up one run, earned, on three hits and fanned two.
David Marchbanks (4-1) took the loss for South Carolina after going five and two-thirds innings and allowing two runs, earned, on seven hits with three strikeouts.
The Razorbacks took the lead in game one with a pair of runs in the top of the fifth inning. Hagedorn singled with two outs to score Jason Pyle (walk) and Hode (single).
South Carolina scratched out a run in the bottom half of the fifth on Steven Tolleson’s sacrifice fly that plated Bryan Triplett.
Brannon was lifted in the sixth inning with two on and two outs. Caton Hall forced Triplett to hit into a fielder’s choice to end the scoring threat.
In the seventh, Hall retired the first two batters of the inning before walking Tolleson. Sawatski was then brought in and worked a 2-2 count on Tim Seaton. Tolleson was then thrown out attempting to steal second to end the game.
Arkansas will now travel to Shreveport, La., to play Louisiana Tech and Centenary Tuesday, March 18 in a double-header. Game one against Louisiana Tech is slated for 5 p.m., while game two against Centenary is scheduled for an 8 p.m. start.