No. 6 Razorbacks Travel To Shriners College Classic

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Photo Courtesy: University of Arkansas Athletics

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The No. 6 Arkansas baseball team hits the road for the first time this season, traveling to Houston, Texas, for the Shriners Hospitals for Children College Classic at Minute Maid Park on Feb. 28-March 1.

GAME TIMES:
Friday (Feb. 28) – 3 p.m. vs. No. 22 Oklahoma
Saturday (Feb. 29) – 7 p.m. vs. Texas
Sunday (March 1) – 7 p.m. vs. Baylor

All three games will air live on AT&T Sports Net and will be streamed live on Astros.com & MLB.com. The games can also be heard on the Razorback Sports Network from Learfield/IMG, including locally in Fayetteville on 92.1 FM.

Arkansas and Oklahoma last faced each other in a fall exhibition in 2019, but met in a real game in 2012 in Norman, last defeating OU in 2009. The Hogs and Longhorns have played each other five times over the last two years, with a pair of two-game series in Fayetteville (2018) and in Austin (2019), with a College World Series matchup sandwiched between in 2018. Arkansas’ most recent series with Baylor came in 2012, with the Hogs taking two of three from the Bears in Waco in postseason play.

It will be the third time Arkansas has played in the Shriners College Classic, going a combined 5-1 over the two appearances in 2012 and 2016. In 2012, Arkansas defeated Texas Tech (3-1) and Texas (7-3), while scoring victories over Rice (5-2), Houston (12-3) and Texas Tech (10-6) in the 2016 event.

The Razorbacks are coming off a four-game sweep of Gonzaga over the second weekend of the 2020 season, facing the Bulldogs for the first time since 2016 and the first time in a series longer than two games. Arkansas opened with a 7-5 victory in the Thursday, Feb. 20, opener, breaking a 5-5 tie in the seventh inning on an RBI groundout from Christian Franklin, followed by a wild pitch for insurance. In game two, the Razorbacks rolled to a 9-3 win, scoring multiple runs in the fifth, sixth & seventh innings. In Saturday’s game, the Razorbacks blanked the Zags, 5-0, to clinch the series win. The Hogs got 6.0 nearly unhittable innings from Patrick Wicklander, as well as three hits & three RBIs from freshman Robert Moore. He had two more hits and RBIs as he was one of four with multi-hit performances in the game, as Matt Goodheart led the charge with three hits and three RBIs to push Arkansas to a 9-5 win and complete the second sweep in as many weeks for the Hogs.

A week after Heston Kjerstad and Connor Noland earned weekly honors from the SEC, the Razorbacks added another in Robert Moore’s SEC Co-Player of the Week. He was also named Perfect Game National Player of the Week, giving Arkansas two national awards in as many weeks of the 2020 season.

Head Coach Dave Van Horn has tabbed RHP Connor Noland (Oklahoma), LHP Patrick Wicklander (Texas) and RHP Kole Ramage (Baylor) this weekend at the Shriners College Classic. Last weekend, Noland and Wicklander both picked up wins in their respective starts. Noland went 6.0 innings, allowing two earned runs on five hits, striking out three to improve to 2-0. Wicklander earned his second victory after going 6.0 shutout frames, giving up just one hit, a walk and a hit batter, striking out seven. Ramage pitched twice against the Zags, totaling 4.1 innings between the two appearances, with two earned runs and six hits allowed, walking two and striking out two, starting the series opener on Feb. 20.

PITCHING ROTATIONS
Friday – RHP Connor Noland vs. RHP Cade Cavalli
Saturday – LHP Patrick Wicklander vs. RHP Ty Madden
Sunday – RHP Kole Ramage vs. RHP Hayden Kettler

Arkansas is ranked in the top 10 of all six polls, moving inside the top 10 after the first two weeks of the season, sitting as high as No. 2 in the country this week by the NCBWA.

2020 WEEK 3 RANKINGSNCBWA – No. 2
Collegiate Baseball – No. 3
USA Today Coaches – No. 5
Perfect Game – No. 5
D1 Baseball – No. 6
Baseball America – No. 9

After Arkansas’ weekend in Houston, the Hogs will return home to take on Illinois State on Tuesday, March 3, at 3 p.m., at Baum-Walker Stadium.

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

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