FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – No. 11 Arkansas completed the mid-week sweep of Centenary on Wednesday with an 8-5 win over the Gents in front of 1,205 at Baum Stadium.
The Razorbacks improve to 19-3 on the season in temperatures that hovered in the mid-30s. The loss drops Centenary to 9-13 on the season.
Lee Land got his first start of the season on the mound for the Razorbacks, pitching five innings to earn the win. He allowed two runs on five hits and tied his career high with four strikeouts.
Chris Rhoads came out of the bullpen and secured the Hogs’ win with a perfect ninth inning to earn his first save. He struck out two of the three batters he faced. UA used four pitchers on the afternoon.
Johnny Noland took the loss for the Gents, falling to 0-2 on the season. He worked three innings allowing seven runs – six earned – on five hits. He also walked five with a strikeout.
Centenary plated the first run of the day in the top of the first inning as a leadoff double by Tim Ryan came around to score on a sacrifice fly to right field by Matt Webb.
The Hogs countered in the bottom half of the inning with a RBI single by Wayne Hrozek and a sacrifice fly off the bat of Danny Hamblin. The RBI was the team-leading 32nd of the season for Hamblin, who has driven in a run for Arkansas in 18-of-22 games.
Hrozek finished the day 2 for 3 with two RBI while Hamblin was 1 for 4.
Arkansas tacked on three more runs in the second inning to extend the lead to 5-1. Robison provided the run production with a two-run home run over the bullpen in left field. It was Robison’s first home run since the 2004 season finale against Auburn. Hrozek also added another RBI single in the inning.
Robison equaled his career-best with his third RBI in the third inning with a sacrifice fly to center. Matt Willard also had a RBI single in the inning to give the Hogs a 7-1 lead. Willard finished the day 2 for 4 with a run scored.
Jimmy Baker singled home the Gents second run of the ballgame in the top of the fifth inning off Land. Centenary added another run in the sixth inning off UA reliever Michael Wild. Nate Santiago hit a high-chopping infield single in front of second base to cut the Hogs’ lead to 7-3.
Hamblin scored the Razorbacks’ eighth run of the game in the sixth inning. He singled and quickly moved around the bases on three straight wild pitches from new Gents’ hurler Derek Bross. The Gents fought back with two more runs off Wild in the seventh inning on a RBI single by Alex Maldonado and a wild pitch by Hogs’ reliever Shaun Seibert.
Ryan and Baker led the Centenary offensive attack with two hits apiece.
The Razorbacks welcome SEC foe Georgia to Baum Stadium for a three-game series beginning at 6:35 p.m. Friday. It will be the first meeting between the two squads since the Hogs took two-of-three games at Baum Stadium in 2003.