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No. 24 Razorbacks Open Series With 12-1 Win

The No. 24 Arkansas baseball team (7-0) remained undefeated by blasting South Alabama (3-5) 12-1 on Friday in Baum Stadium
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The No. 24 Arkansas baseball team (7-0) remained undefeated by blasting South Alabama (3-5) 12-1 on Friday in Baum Stadium. The Razorbacks put the game out of reach early, scoring four runs in the first inning, five more in the third and three in the fifth to cruise to victory.



Junior left fielder Joe Serrano had a career day at the plate, pounding out a career-high four hits and registering a career-high four RBI. The Tucson, Ariz., native’s production included three doubles, which were the most by a Razorback since 2007. Arkansas had four hitters score two runs, with Serrano, Andrew Benintendi, Krisjon Wilkerson and Michael Bernal all touching home plate twice. Wilkerson, Bernal and Brett McAfee also had multiple hits.



Junior left-handed pitcher Jalen Beeks (3-0) earned the win after throwing 6.0 innings and allowing just one run on three hits. He struck out six, bringing his season total to 17, and has an earned-run average of 0.51 with opponents hitting just .155 against him this year. True freshmen James Teague, Dominic Taccolini and Chris Falwell finished off the game on the mound with 1.0 shutout inning each.



Arkansas and South Alabama will wrap up the three-game series with a doubleheader Saturday. The first game is set for a 12:05 p.m. first pitch, and the second game will follow approximately 25 minutes after game one. Arkansas concludes its season-opening 10-game home stand with a Monday matinee against IPFW. First pitch Monday is scheduled for 3:05 p.m.



For more information on Arkansas baseball, follow @RazorbackBSB on Twitter.



Coach Van Horn Quotes

Arkansas Head Coach Dave Van Horn (on LF-Joe Serrano) – “He was 4-for-4 with three doubles and on base five times. He had a tremendous day. He has been around and has a lot of plate appearances here at Arkansas. I think the experience is starting to pay off for him. When he is swinging at strikes he is tough to get out.”

Arkansas Head Coach Dave Van Horn (on Arkansas’ production at the plate with two outs) – “It’s huge. It is demoralizing if you are on the other end of it. You are just one pitch from getting out of an inning and then the next thing you know you are down two or down four. We did a good job of just battling at the plate. We worked the counts for the most part.”



Game Notes

· Arkansas is 7-0 for the fifth time under head coach Dave Van Horn. The Razorbacks also won their first seven games in 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2012.

· The Razorbacks have scored six runs or more in the first seven games of a season for the fourth time in program history and the first time since 1997. Arkansas also opened the 1996 and 1960 seasons with at least seven straight games of six runs or more.

· The Razorbacks recorded a season-high 14 hits Friday, Arkansas’ highest hit total since May 18, 2012.

· Arkansas scored five runs in the third inning, matching the team’s season high for an inning. The Razorbacks also scored five runs in the eighth inning of their 8-3 win vs. Eastern Illinois on Feb. 22.

· Arkansas’ starting pitchers have allowed four earned runs in 33.2 innings pitched so far this season, an earned-run average of 1.07.

· Arkansas was hit by a pitch twice in Friday’s game, extending the Razorbacks’ SEC-leading total to 21 through the first seven games this season. The Razorbacks have had at least one hit by pitch in every game so far this season and multiple hit by pitches in six games. Arkansas was hit by a pitch 36 times in 61 games last season.

· James Teague and Chris Falwell made their Arkansas debut in Friday’s game, becoming the 15th and 16th Razorbacks to debut this season. Arkansas entered the season with 27 student-athletes who had not appeared in a game for Arkansas, the highest number in the SEC.

· Joe Serrano recorded a single-game career-high four hits and was the first Razorback with four hits in a game since May 18, 2012.

· Joe Serrano had a career-high four RBI in Friday’s game and was the first Razorback with four RBI in a game since April 22, 2012.

· Joe Serrano was the first Razorback with three doubles in a game since April 8, 2007.

· Andrew Benintendi has recorded at least one hit, one RBI and one run scored in four consecutive games.

· Arkansas improved to 2-0 all-time against South Alabama.

How They Scored

· Arkansas 2, South Alabama 0; Bottom 1st: Krisjon Wilkerson singled to right field to score Andrew Benintendi from third base and Joe Serrano from second base.

· Arkansas 4, South Alabama 0; Bottom 1st: Brett McAfee doubled to right field to score Eric Fisher from second base and Krisjon Wilkerson from first base.

· Arkansas 4, South Alabama 1; Top 2nd: Adam Ballew singled up the middle to score Cole Gleason from third base.

· Arkansas 5, South Alabama 1; Bottom 3rd: Jake Wise grounded out to score Tyler Spoon from third base.

· Arkansas 6, South Alabama 1; Bottom 3rd: Andrew Benintendi walked to score Krisjon Wilkerson from third base.

· Arkansas 9, South Alabama 1; Bottom 3rd: Joe Serrano doubled to center field to score Brett McAfee from third base, Michael Bernal from second base and Andrew Benintendi from first base.

· Arkansas 10, South Alabama 1; Bottom 5th: Joe Serrano doubled to score Michael Bernal from third base.

· Arkansas 11, South Alabama 1; Bottom 5th: Brian Anderson singled up the middle to score Garrett Rucker from third base.

· Arkansas 12, South Alabama 1; Bottom 5th: Tyler Spoon hit a sacrifice fly to center field to score Joe Serrano from third base.
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