No. 1 Arkansas defeated South Carolina 6-1 on Thursday night in SEC action in Columbia.
Arkansas (31-6, 12-4) received power hitting from Robert Moore and outstanding pitching to get the win over host South Carolina (24-11, 10-6). Moore hit a pair of home runs in the game.
After a scoreless first inning, Arkansas’ Moore hit a shot over the fence in right center for a 1-0 lead. Moore was hitting in the sixth spot for this game. He has spent the majority of the time this season hitting either leadoff or ninth.
South Carolina tied the game at 1 in the bottom of the fourth. The leadoff hitter in the inning walked and then catcher Colin Burgess hit a one-out double to right field to plate the run.
In the top of the seventh, Christian Franklin singled to start the inning. Then Moore hit his second long home run of the night for a 3-1 lead. Moore’s home run left no doubt as it left the bat. It was his 10th of the season. Casey Opitz reached on a throwing error. Went to second on a wild pitch and then third base on another throwing error. Zach Gregory then executed a perfect squeeze bunt that scored Opitz for a 4-1 lead.
The Hogs continued to pad the lead in the top of the eighth. Cayden Wallace singled to left to start the inning. Brady Slavens then doubled to get Wallace to third. Franklin then singled to plate Wallace and get Slavens to third. Franklin went to second on the throw. The Hogs had runners on second and third with no outs but didn’t add any more runs after Wallace’s score.
In the top of the ninth, Gregory walked, but Braydon Webb ran for him. Matt Goodheart then walked and was replaced by Ethan Bates. Slavens then single to plate Webb with one out. Bates went to second on the single.
Caleb Bolden got the start for the Razorbacks. He went 3.1 innings, allowed two hits, one run (earned), walked three, hit one, struck out two, faced 16 hitters, threw 54 pitches with 29 strikes. Ryan Costeiu replaced him. Costeiu worked 1.2 innings, walked one and hit another, struck out two, faced seven hitters, threw 25 pitches and 11 were strikes. Caden Monke replaced him. He worked one inning, faced two hitters, threw five pitches and three were strikes. Kevin Kopps replaced him to start the seventh. Kopps worked 3.0 innings, struck out six, faced nine batters, threw 34 pitches with 25 strikes. He got his fifth save of the season. Monke (5-0) gets the win and Thomas Farr (2-4) takes the loss.
The two teams will play a pair of games on Friday. The first game is at 1 p.m. and then 6 p.m. on the nightcap. Arkansas will send righty Peyton Pallette (1-2, 4.06 ERA) against South Carolina’s right-handed pitcher Brannon Jordan (4-2, 3.15 ERA).