FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The Arkansas baseball team (15-8) picked up a doubleheader sweep over Mississippi Valley State (1-22) Tuesday evening, taking down the Delta Devils 6-0 in game one and 12-1 in the nightcap at Baum Stadium.
In game one, sophomore Colin Poché picked up the victory on the mound after a career-high-tying 5.0 shutout innings. The Flower Mound, Texas, native also tied his career high with six strikeouts while allowing just three hits and one walk. Poché improved to 2-0 this season and lowered his 2014 earned-run average to 0.54.
The Razorbacks were led at the plate by sophomore team captain Tyler Spoon, who finished the game 3-for-4 with two runs scored, one double and one RBI. Junior Eric Fisher registered two runs batted in on a double to the right-center field wall.
In game two, True freshman James Teague earned his first collegiate victory on the mound in his first start as a Razorback. The Bartlesville, Okla., native pitched 4.0 innings and allowed just one run, while striking out four.
Preseason All-American Brian Anderson led Arkansas with four RBI as part of a 2-for-4 effort that included an inside-the-park home run. Anderson hit a one-out shot high off the wall in left-center field and circled the bases after the ball ricocheted over the center fielder's head. Freshman Andrew Benintendi also had two hits and added three RBI and three runs scored.
The Razorbacks and Delta Devils wrap up their three-game mid-week series Wednesday with a 6:35 p.m. first pitch at Dickey-Stephens Park in North Little Rock. The series finale will be televised on Cox Sports Television.
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Coach Van Horn Quotes
Head Coach Dave Van Horn (opening statement) - “Glad to get those two games in and get a chance to use some pitching. In the first game, it took us a little while to get it going, in my opinion. The second game I thought we came out and swung the bats real well. We hit a lot of balls hard and hit some balls at people. We put together a couple good innings and finally kind of put them away those last two innings. We have another game tomorrow. We have to travel, then travel from there so it was good to get that in and get it over with and get a couple wins.”
Head Coach Dave Van Horn (on pitching staff) - “We did a good job on Saturday and Sunday. There were some guys who are hungry to get out on the mound. Still a couple more guys we are going to get in the game tomorrow. We will let (RHP) Alex Phillips go for a while, if he does a good job but there are three or four more guys who want to pitch. We might even want to pitch a couple guys who pitched tonight another inning, kind of get them used to pitching two days in a row.”
Head Coach Dave Van Horn (on 11 games in 13 days) – “It’s tough, originally it wasn’t going to be that many. We added one of the games today, then next week, our game got moved up because of the TV game with ESPNU. It is good exposure for our program and our league, but it’s tough when you play at Mississippi State on the road, come home, take one day off and play Nebraska a couple times. Then the next night, you’re playing and trying to beat a South Carolina team that is awfully good, on a Thursday night with no time really to prepare for them. If I would’ve known we were going to have that game, I wouldn’t have had a Wednesday game. But it’s just the way it is. It happened to us a couple years ago when I think we played 8 games in 9 days and we had to go to Florida. Played Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday against Florida. We’ll just play, sometimes when you’re playing good and winning, you just want to play. Hopefully, we will continue to find ways to win.”
· The 6-0 shutout in game one of the doubleheader marked the team’s second-straight shutout. The last consecutive shutouts came on March 12-13, 2013 against Binghamton (6-0) and Gonzaga (1-0).
· The Razorbacks swept a doubleheader for the first time since March 9, 2013 against San Diego State.
· Arkansas moved to 14-0 on the year when scoring first and remain a perfect 4-0 against Mississippi Valley State in the all-time series.
· Brian Anderson’s inside-the-park home run in the sixth inning was the Razorbacks’ first since April, 2007.
· Arkansas put together a string of 25.2 consecutive scoreless innings that was broken up in the second inning in game two of the doubleheader. The streak saw seven pitchers take the mound against Alabama and Mississippi Valley State and catapult the Razorbacks to four victories.
· The Razorbacks were hit by a five pitches during the doubleheader to bring the season total to 49. Arkansas has been hit by a pitch in nine straight games, in 20 of 23 games and hit by multiple pitches in a contest 14 times this season.
· Colin Poché’s 5.0 innings of work marked a season-high as the sophomore won his second-straight outing and his six strikeouts tied a career-high.
· James Teague made his third collegiate appearance and first career start in game two of the doubleheader. The freshman earned his first career win in 4.0 innings of work and added a career-high four strikeouts.
How They Scored
· Arkansas 1, Mississippi Valley State 0; Bottom 2nd: Krisjon Wilkerson singled to left-center field to score Tyler Spoon from third base.
· Arkansas 2, Mississippi Valley State 0; Bottom 3rd: Tyler Spoon singled up the middle to score Joe Serrano from second base.
· Arkansas 3, Mississippi Valley State 0; Bottom 4th: Jake Wise hit a sacrifice fly to right field to score Krisjon Wilkerson from third base.
· Arkansas 5, Mississippi Valley State 0; Bottom 5th: Eric Fisher doubled to right-center field to score Brian Anderson from third base and Tyler Spoon from first base.
· Arkansas 6, Mississippi Valley State 0; Bottom 5th: Bobby Wernes grounded out to the pitcher to score Eric Fisher from third base.
· Arkansas 1, Mississippi Valley State 0; Bottom 1st: Brian Anderson doubled to right-center field to score Andrew Benintendi from second base.
· Arkansas 2, Mississippi Valley State 0; Bottom 1st: Tyler Spoon hit a sacrifice fly to center field to score Joe Serrano from third base.
· Arkansas 3, Mississippi Valley State 0; Bottom 1st: Eric Fisher hit a sacrifice fly to right field to score Brian Anderson from third base.
· Arkansas 3, Mississippi Valley State 1; Top 2nd: Kalik May singled to left field to score Xzavier Franklin from second base.
· Arkansas 4, Mississippi Valley State 1; Bottom 2nd: Andrew Benintendi doubled to right-center field to score Jake Wise from second base.
· Arkansas 5, Mississippi Valley State 1; Bottom 5th: Clark Eagan doubled down the right field line to score Eric Fisher from second base.
· Arkansas 8, Mississippi Valley State 1; Bottom 6th: Brian Anderson hit an inside-the-park home run to left-center field to score Bobby Wernes from third base and Andrew Benintendi from second base.
· Arkansas 10, Mississippi Valley State 1; Bottom 7th: Andrew Benintendi singled up the middle to score Garrett Rucker from third base and Jake Wise from second base.· Arkansas 12, Mississippi Valley State 1; Bottom 7th: Joe Serrano singled up the middle to score Bobby Wernes from third base and Andrew Benintendi from second base.