FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The No. 25 Arkansas
baseball team (4-0) earned a 6-2 victory over Eastern Illinois (1-4) in the
series opener Friday at Baum Stadium. The Razorbacks scored all of their runs in
the third, fourth and fifth innings and cruised to the win behind 8.0 shutout
innings on the mound.
pitcher Jalen Beeks (2-0) earned the win for the second straight series-opening
game. The team captain from Prairie Grove, Ark., pitched 5.2 shutout innings and
recorded five strikeouts while walking two and allowing three hits. Sophomore
Landon Simpson took over for Beeks and added 2.1 shutout innings while striking
out one and allowing one hit.
True freshman Andrew
Benintendi led the Razorbacks at the plate with a two-hit day, including an RBI
on his first collegiate hit. The Cincinnati native had two doubles, one RBI and
one run scored while increasing his on-base percentage to a team-high .529.
Juniors Brian Anderson and Eric Fisher and sophomore Tyler Spoon also added one
RBI each, and Fisher scored another run when he stole home on a double steal
with Jake Wise going from first base to second base.
Arkansas and Eastern
Illinois are set for two more games this weekend with 1:05 p.m. start times
Saturday and Sunday.
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Coach Van Horn
Arkansas Head Coach
Dave Van Horn (on LHP-Jalen Beeks starting vs. closing) – “He is a pretty
good pitcher. I like him at the beginning and the end. He was the big story
today obviously. He gave us five strong innings. I think he ran out of gas there
in the sixth, kind of got up to his pitch count and we took him out. We had a
six-run lead and could have let him get another hitter, but there was no reason
to stretch him out. He was kind of at that magic number (of pitches) around
mid-80s. He did a great job, walked a couple, struck out five, and made a nice
play on a bunt. He kept his shutout going and just gave us a chance against a
Arkansas Head Coach
Dave Van Horn (on RF-Tyler Spoon throwing out a runner trying to stretch a
single into a double in the 4th inning) – “It was a great
play. It looked like it was probably going to be a double all the way. He got on
it quick and got around the ball so when he fielded it he was already in
throwing position. He got rid of it quick and it was one of those plays where if
you throw it around the bag you have a good shot of getting them. I thought
(SS-Brett) McAfee did a good job fielding the crazy hop.”
· Eric Fisher’s steal
of home was the first by a Razorback since May 4, 2011, when Matt Reynolds stole
home vs. Southeast Missouri State.
· True freshman Andrew
Benintendi’s first collegiate hit was an RBI double to left-center field in the
3rd inning that scored Clark Eagan.
· Friday’s game was the
second time this season a Razorback recorded two doubles in a game. Andrew
Benintendi joined preseason All-American Brian Anderson, who had two doubles
Feb. 14 vs. Appalachian State.
· Jalen Beeks extended
his scoreless streak to all 11.2 innings he has pitched this season by throwing
5.2 shutout innings after 6.0 shutout innings in last week’s season
· Arkansas was hit by
three pitches in Friday’s game, extending the Razorbacks’ SEC-leading total to
15 through the first four games this season. Arkansas was hit by a pitch 36
times in 61 games last season.
· The Razorbacks’
starting pitchers have allowed just 10 hits and struck out 19 in 19.2 innings
pitched so far this season.
· Arkansas improved to
19-1 all-time against Eastern Illinois. The Razorbacks have won 13 in a row
against the Panthers.
· Arkansas 1, Eastern
Illinois 0; Bottom 3rd: Andrew Benintendi hit a double to left-center field to
score Clark Eagan from second base.
· Arkansas 2, Eastern
Illinois 0; Bottom 3rd: Brian Anderson reached on a fielders’ choice to score
Bobby Wernes from third base.
· Arkansas 3, Eastern
Illinois 0; Bottom 4th: Eric Fisher scored from third base on a double
· Arkansas 4, Eastern
Illinois 0; Bottom 5th: Tyler Spoon hit a double to left-center field to score
Andrew Benintendi from second base.
· Arkansas 5, Eastern
Illinois 0; Bottom 5th: Brian Anderson scored from third base on a wild
· Arkansas 6, Eastern
Illinois 0; Bottom 5th: Eric Fisher hit a sacrifice fly to left field to score
Tyler Spoon from third base.
· Arkansas 6, Eastern
Illinois 2; Top 9th: Trey Russell hit a double to left field to score Marshawn
Taylor from third base and Jason Scholl from second base.