FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Jeff Hoefler had four hits and Charlie Isaacson pitched a complete game to lead Arkansas to an 8-1 win over No. 1 LSU Friday night in the first game of a three-game Southeastern Conference series.
A season-high crowd of 4,392 at Baum Stadium saw the Razorbacks (25-26, 9-16 SEC) win their fourth game in a row and third-straight in conference play. The Fighting Tigers (36-14-1, 17-8 SEC), ranked No. 1 in the ESPN/USA Today Baseball Weekly coaches poll, had winning streaks of eight games overall and five games in SEC play snapped.
LSU maintained its one-game lead over Ole Miss (35-15-1, 16-9 SEC) for the SEC Western Division lead with the Rebels’ 5-4 loss at Tennessee Friday night. SEC Eastern Division leader Georgia (34-15, 16-9 SEC) joined Ole Miss one game behind the Tigers for the SEC overall lead with a 5-4 win over Vanderbilt (22-27, 8-17 SEC).
The win was Arkansas’ third in a row over teams with a No. 1 ranking. Last year, the Razorbacks closed out their home schedule with back-to-back wins over consensus No. 1 South Carolina.
Isaacson (4-6) limited LSU to one unearned run on five hits en route to his third career complete game and first since an 8-1 win over Ole Miss on May 7, 1999. The junior right-hander had lost his last three decisions since a March 16 win over Georgia.
Arkansas rocked Tiger starter Lane Mestepey (8-2) for all eight of its runs (five earned) on 11 hits and chased the freshman left-hander after 5 1/3 innings.
The Razorbacks blew the game open with four runs in the fourth inning, including a two-run double by Ryan Fox and a two-run home run by Cliff Crouse that gave the Hogs a 5-0 lead.
LSU took advantage of a passed ball in the top of the sixth inning for its only run as Ryan Theriot scored on a sacrifice fly by Mike Fontenot. UA stretched the lead to 8-1 in the bottom of the inning, including an RBI double by Hoefler and Andrew Wishy’s pinch-hit RBI single.
Arkansas’ Cody Clark matched a season high with three hits.
The series continues Saturday at 6:30 p.m. CT with UA junior right-hander Gary Hogan Jr. (3-3, 2.58 ERA) facing LSU senior right-hander Jason Scobie (3-1, 5.07 ERA).