FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The University of Arkansas Razorback offense scored 10 runs on Sunday afternoon, but late inning rallies by the Auburn Tigers would stun the Razorbacks at Baum Stadium, 12-10, in 10 innings.
For Arkansas (17-13, 3-8 SEC) Brett Eibner had three hits, scored three runs and drove in three as one of five Razorbacks to have more than one base hit on the afternoon. Brian Fletcher was Auburn’s star (20-12, 6-6 SEC) as he outdid the Razorbacks with four hits, two runs and four RBI, including the game winning hit in the top of the 10th with two outs.
“That’s the way it is,” Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn said. “Sometimes it comes down to one thing. We kept swinging the bats and doing what we were supposed to do and it obviously just didn’t work out for us.”
Down by six runs in the eighth Auburn came back with four in that inning, four in the ninth and two more in the 10th to pull out the series win in Fayetteville. The Razorbacks scored early by posting seven runs in the opening three innings. They would add another two in the bottom of the eighth in response to Auburn’s first rally.
Arkansas scored three times in the bottom of the first, its first scores in an opening inning since March 25, and the most since it put up four against Georgia on March 15. In the inning, Ben Tschepikow singled with one out which was followed by a single up the middle by Logan Forsythe. Jeff Nutt would then hit a double off the right field wall scoring Tschepikow but Forsythe was gunned down at the plate by a nice play in right field and a superb relay. Tim Smalling was next up and drew a five-pitch walk leaving the door open for Chase Leavitt who doubled in both runners on a shot down the left-field line.
Auburn would come back with two in the second inning to make it a one-run game on a pair of solo home runs, but an undeterred Razorback squad would answer with four in the bottom of third to make it a 7-2 ballgame. With one out, Forsythe would hit a triple to center field and score on a home run to left field by Smalling. Leavitt would single in the next at bat and come all the way around on another Arkansas home run, this one by Eibner off an Auburn relief pitcher on his first of the game.
A run in the Arkansas half of the sixth inning was the only scoring by either team until the eighth when Auburn started its rally. The Tigers would score four runs on three hits and one Razorback error to make it an 8-6 game with the Razorbacks needing six more outs.
The atmosphere around the Arkansas bench in the bottom of the eighth was one of enthusiasm and that showed in the bottom of the eighth as Smalling led off the inning with a double down the left field line. He would score on an Eibner double two batters later. A Jacob House single up the middle would plate Eibner.
The Razorbacks return to action at Baum Stadium on Tuesday evening when they host the Oral Roberts Golden Eagles in a 6:35 p.m. start. For more information regarding Razorback baseball or University of Arkansas athletics please visit www.hogwired.com.