No. 19 Auburn bounced back to take a 5-3 win over No. 4 Arkansas on Saturday.
Auburn used a big bottom of the eighth inning to score two runs and break open a tied game against Arkansas’ ace closer Brady Tygart. After striking out the first hitter in the eight, Tygart then walked a hitter and allowed a single to put runners on the corners. Auburn pinch hitter Mason Land bunted and Tygart trying to get the runner at home threw it away. Runners advanced to second and third with one out. A sacrifice fly pushed the fifth run of the game across the plate for Auburn.
Arkansas got on the scoreboard first in the top of the second. With one out, Kendall Diggs walked. Chris Lanzilli was hit by a pitch. Braydon Webb came up with two outs and lined a single that allowed Diggs to beat the throw home and score from second base for a 1-0 lead.
Auburn missed a good chance to jump on the Hogs in the bottom of the first. The first two hitters walked and got hit by a pitch. But then Hagen Smith retired the next three hitters. However in the bottom of the second designated hitter Brooks Carlson hit a solo home run to leadoff the inning and tie the game.
The bottom of the third saw Auburn’s Sonny DiChiara hit one over the fence in left-center field for a 2-1 lead. Arkansas had done a good job of keeping him in check until that at bat.
In the top of the fifth Cayden Wallace started the inning off with a double to left center. Michael Turner grounded out allowing Wallace to go to third. Robert Moore also grounded out to second base, but it allowed Wallace to score to tie the game at 2. After Brady Slavens walked, LSU removed starter Trace Bright. Chase Isbell struck out Diggs to end the inning.
The Razorbacks regained the lead in the top of the seventh when Wallace walked to start the inning. Turner followed with a single to right field with Wallace going to third. Then Moore hit a ball to center field that went as far as it could and stay in the park. It was caught, but the sacrifice fly allowed Wallace to score for a 3-2 advantage.
Auburn tied the game at 3 in the bottom of the seventh when Blake Rambusch went yard off Zebulon Vermillion. All three Auburn runs to this point of the game were home runs.
Hagen Smith worked four innings. He allowed two runs on three hits, fanned four, walked three and gave up a pair of solo home runs. He had a pitch count of 81. Dave Van Horn went to Vermillion to start the bottom of the fifth. Vermillion gave Van Horn a solid 2.1 innings. He allowed one run on two hits, struck out three and threw 20 pitches. Van Horn then went to Tygart who fanned both hitters he faced in the bottom of the seventh to keep the game tied. Tygart ran into problems in the bottom of the eighth and was replaced by Zack Morris.
Auburn starter Trace Bright worked 4.2 innings. He was followed by Chase Isbell and Carson Swilling. Tygart (2-2) took the loss and Swilling (2-2) got the win.
Arkansas (35-12, 15-8) and Auburn (32-15, 13-10) will play the rubber game of the series on Sunday with the first pitch set for 1 p.m. CT and on the SEC Network+.