FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas scored eight runs in the fourth inning and nine in the fifth en route to a 20-3 win over No. 17 Georgia Saturday in the second game of a three-game series at Baum Stadium.
Every starter in the Razorbacks’ (12-10, 2-3 SEC) starting lineup had at least two hits as 12 of UA’s 24 hits – a school record in SEC play – went for extra bases. The Bulldogs (12-6, 2-3 SEC), ranked 17th by Baseball America, suffered their fourth loss in their last seven games.
Arkansas’ Jon Richmond (1-0) earned his first collegiate victory, holding Georgia to three hits in three scoreless innings in relief of starter Layne Berry. UGA starter Scott Murphy (2-1) gave up eight runs on eight hits and was charged with the loss.
Michael Conner, Brian Kirby and Wes McCrotty each hit home runs for the Razorbacks. Conner’s homer was his team-leading sixth and second in as many games. Kirby’s home run was his second of the season and 32nd of his career, moving him into a tie with Troy Eklund for sixth on the school’s career home run list. McCrotty’s home run was his first of the season and just his third in four seasons at UA.
Georgia’s Mark Thornhill extended his hitting streak to 22 games with a single in his final plate appearance. The senior third baseman has hit safely in all of UGA’s 18 games this season after finishing 2000 with a four-game hitting streak.
With Georgia leading 1-0 on an RBI double by Adam Swann in the top of the second inning, Kirby gave the Hogs the lead for good with a two-run, line-drive homer to left field in the bottom of the inning.
The Razorbacks sent 12 batters to the plate in an eight-run fourth inning keyed by two-run singles by Jeff Hoefler and Brett Hagedorn. The Hogs sent 13 batters to the plate for nine runs in the fifth, including Conner’s three-run homer and McCrotty’s two-run homer.
Conner, Hagedorn and McCrotty had three hits each for the Hogs, who recorded their sixth-consecutive home victory over ranked opponents. Cody Clark, Kyle Washburn, Conner and McCrotty had three RBI each while Arkansas played error-free defense for the third game in a row.
The series concludes Sunday at 12:30 p.m. CT as the Razorbacks try to sweep a three-game SEC series for the first time since taking three games from Ole Miss at Baum Stadium to close their 1999 home schedule. Junior right-hander Justin Leraris (0-0) will make his first career start for the Hogs while sophomore right-hander Brandon Morehead (1-0) will take the mound for the Bulldogs.