FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Georgia right-hander Brooks Brown stymied the Arkansas offense as the No. 25 Bulldogs recorded a 2-0 win in front of 3,541 fans at Baum Stadium on a chilly Friday night.
The Razorbacks’ left-hander Nick Schmidt (4-2) struck out a career-high 13 Bulldog batters but it wasn’t enough as Hogs fell to 19-4 on the season and 1-3 in SEC play. Brown (3-1) did not allow a run on just two hits while walking three and striking out six as UGA improves to 16-4 on the season and 2-2 in conference play.
The Dogs’ Joshua Fields came on to close it out with his fourth save of the season, striking out five of the six Razorback batters he faced.
The two hits allowed by Georgia is the fewest collected by a Arkansas team since Kentucky held the Hogs to just two hits on May 5, 2002. It is the first time the Razorbacks have been shutout since LSU accomplished the feat on April 24, 2005.
The Hogs’ offense wasted a dominate performance by Schmidt who allowed just two runs on seven hits in seven innings of work. His 13 strikeouts were the most by an Arkansas pitcher since David Walling fanned 14 against South Carolina on May 16, 1999. It was the second consecutive double-digit strikeout game for Schmidt and the third this season. He now has 56 strikeouts in 44.1 innings this season.
Chris Rhoads threw the final two innings, allowing just one Bulldog hit while recording one strikeout.
The Razorbacks squandered their best scoring opportunity of the night in the first inning. They loaded the bases with one out after two walks by Brown and a throwing error. Brown worked his way out of the jam by getting Clint Arnold to pop out and Brian Walker to fly to right field.
Georgia plated its first run on an inside-the-park home run by Bobby Felmy in the fourth inning. Felmy lined a shot to center field that hit off the wall just beyond the grasp of Craig Gentry, who slammed into the wall as the ball rolled back toward the infield. A dazed Gentry was unable to recover in time to keep Felmy from scoring.
The Bulldogs extended lead to 2-0 in the fifth inning. Matthew Dunn doubled down the left-field line to open the inning and Joey Side followed with a RBI triple. Schmidt then got the 2-3-4-hole hitters in the Dogs’ lineup strikeout swinging. Side led the Georgia attack with a 4-for-5 performance at the plate and a RBI.
Gentry’s third-inning single and David Hum’s fourth-inning single were only hits on the night for the Hogs.
The Razorbacks will look to even the series at 4:05 p.m. on Saturday at Baum Stadium. The Hogs’ Charley Boyce will take the mound opposite Georgia’s Mickey Westphal.