FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – No. 9 Arkansas (5-2) was unable to secure its first sweep of the season, suffering a 12-3 loss to Eastern Illinois (4-2) in Sunday’s series finale at Baum-Walker Stadium.
The Razorbacks watched their two-run lead entering the sixth inning turn into a nine-run deficit by the end of the eighth. Arkansas’ bullpen was knocked around for 10 runs on eight hits and four walks in 3 1/3 innings of relief work.
Hunter Hollan’s strong start on the mound was spoiled in the loss. The lefty, who twirled 5 2/3 innings of two-run ball, struck out four while allowing six hits and two walks. He departed the game with a two-run lead and in line for the win.
Through his first two starts of the season, Hollan has been as good as advertised. He boasts a 1-0 record with a 2.79 ERA and nine strikeouts in 9 2/3 innings on the year.
The Hogs provided Hollan with early offense thanks to Jace Bohrofen’s towering solo home run over the J.B. and Johnelle Hunt Family Baseball Development Center in the second before John Bolton’s two-out RBI double in the fifth. Tavian Josenberger’s two-out single to right scored Bolton from second, extending Arkansas’ fifth-inning lead to 3-1.
From there, however, things took a turn for the worst. With Hollan out, Eastern Illinois took it to the Arkansas bullpen, scoring one in the sixth, four in the seventh and six more in the eighth to open a commanding 12-3 advantage.
The Razorbacks recorded only four hits all game and were silenced over the final four innings. Josenberger finished with a team-leading two base knocks, while he, Bohrofen and Bolton each recorded one of the Hogs’ three RBI.
Arkansas hosts Illinois State in a midweek matchup at 3 p.m. Wednesday, March 1, before welcoming in Wright State for three games this weekend. The series between the Razorbacks and Raiders gets underway at 3 p.m. Friday, March 4, on SEC Network+.
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