Arkansas won’t be playing for the SEC Tournament title on Sunday after a ninth-inning desperation rally came up short against Texas A&M in a 5-4 semifinal loss in Hoover, Ala.
It wasn’t a particularly sharp game for the Razorbacks, who were trying to beat the Aggies for the fifth time in a month. A&M simply has been improving rapidly over the last month of the season and the Hogs’ pitching staff struggled.
Starter Brady Tygart wasn’t particularly sharp, going 3.1 innings, giving up a run on three hits, walking a couple, hitting a batter and giving up two doubles. He wasn’t the only Hogs’ pitcher that couldn’t get things together on the mound,
The Hogs used six pitchers. Will McEntire, Gage Wood, Parker Coil, Christian Foutch and Austin Ledbetter all had their problems. If Dave Van Horn had managed to pull out a win here, your guess is as good as anybody else who was going to be on the mound for Sunday, but now that won’t really matter.
The Razorbacks are solidly in a host spot for and NCAA Regional next week and the fans started lining up outside Baum-Walker Stadium for HogPen tickets on Thursday night. No, seriously, the line was forming for the chaotic rush to the outfield seats when games start Friday.
Teams, game times and that information won’t be announced until Monday. Van Horn is probably just glad to get some time to slow down and re-group for the tournament that matters with a goal of getting to Omaha at the top of the agenda.
Texas A&M scored a single run in the fourth inning. There was no more scoring until the sixth inning when three runs crossed the plate on free passes that ultimately provided an edge the Hogs couldn’t overcome along with a single run in the eighth for a 5-2 lead.
The Hogs got three runs in the ninth, but couldn’t get the last outs and the game ended with two on base, including the tying run in scoring position. The Razorbacks left nine runs on base in the game while getting 10 hits, but they couldn’t get the key runs across when they could have added a run.
Arkansas is now 41-16 on the season and likely guaranteed a host spot for an NCAA Regional next week with a Super Regional host spot the next week.