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Smith’s legendary performance on mound paces Hogs past Beavers

Razorbacks get small measure of revenge for fans against Oregon State, but more importantly good start by Smith.



ARLINGTON, Texas — Hagen Smith turned in one of the most legendary pitching performances in school history, tying a single-game program record with 17 strikeouts to lead No. 2 Arkansas (4-1) to a memorable 5-4 win over No. 7 Oregon State (5-1) on Friday night in the Kubota College Baseball Series at Globe Life Field.

The left-hander needed only 18 outs and 78 pitches, including 59 strikes, to tie the Hogs’ single-game strikeout record, which had stood for nearly 17 years. It was held by Jess Todd, who struck out 17 South Carolina batters in 118 pitches over eight innings during Arkansas’ 6-0 win over the Gamecocks on May 24, 2007, in the SEC Tournament in Hoover, Ala.

Smith, who tossed six scoreless innings while working around just three hits and one walk in the outing, recorded 15 consecutive outs via strikeout to begin the ballgame. The Bullard, Texas, native tied the program’s single-game strikeout record with the final out of the sixth inning, as he punched out Oregon State’s Gavin Turley looking on a 2-2 slider.

17 of the 18 total outs that Smith recorded came via strikeout, and he racked up 15 of his 17 strikeouts using his slider. Smith fanned Oregon State star leadoff hitter Travis Bazzana three times on the night, as the Razorback pitching staff’s 23 total strikeouts in the ballgame broke the program record of 18 set multiple times, including three times in 2021.

Smith’s 17-strikeout performance also broke a Globe Life Field single-game record. The previous Globe Life Field single-game strikeout record was held by Oklahoma’s Chazz Martinez, who fanned 14 vs. Northwestern State on Feb. 27, 2022.

Oregon State and Arkansas were scoreless until the bottom of the fifth inning, when Ben McLaughlin’s three-run double with two outs gave the Razorbacks a 3-0 lead. The go-ahead damage came on the very first pitch McLaughlin saw from Beaver reliever Nelson Keljo, who replaced starter Aiden May in the middle of an at-bat after he departed due to injury.

Jayson Jones’ RBI single in the bottom of the sixth stretched Arkansas’ advantage to four, but Oregon State’s potent offense would come to life after Smith exited the ballgame. The Beavers scored four across the seventh and eighth innings, finally breaking through against Razorback relief pitchers Will McEntire (1.0 IP, 2 R, 2 SO), Stone Hewlett (0.1 IP, 1 R, 1 SO) and Gage Wood (1.0, 1 R, 1 SO) for the game’s tying runs.

With the contest knotted at four in the bottom of the eighth, Peyton Holt played hero for the Hogs. Holt’s two-out triple to center scored Wehiwa Aloy, who was hit by a pitch to begin the inning, from first and put Arkansas ahead, 5-4.

With an Oregon State runner on second, hard-throwing reliever Jake Faherty was called upon to record the final two outs of the ninth. The Georgetown, Ky., native, struck out both batters he faced to secure Arkansas’ win and lock down his first career save.

The Razorbacks’ weekend in the Kubota College Baseball Series rolls on tomorrow. Arkansas will play Oklahoma State (3-2), who defeated Michigan, 9-3, earlier in the day on Friday, at 7 p.m. Saturday at Globe Life Field. The game is broadcast only on FloSports but you can hear it for free here at or on the radio at ESPN Arkansas 95.3 in the River Valley, 96.3 in Hot Springs or 104.3 in Harrison-Mountain Home.