FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (Univ. of Ark.) – The Arkansas baseball team (12-8, 2-3 SEC) used some late-game heroics at the plate and sophomore Trey Killian tossed his second straight complete game to send the Razorbacks to a 2-1 victory over Alabama (15-7, 3-2) 17-9 Saturday afternoon at Baum Stadium.
Killian (1-3) continued his stellar run on the mound with another complete game, going all 9.0 innings and giving up one run on four hits, while adding a season-high seven strikeouts. He retired 14 of the final 15 batters he faced and did not allow a hit after the fifth inning.
Trailing 1-0 in the seventh inning with two outs and the bases empty, Arkansas came to life at the plate with three consecutive singles, capped by an RBI base knock from Michael Bernal to send Krisjon Wilkerson racing home to knot the score 1-1.
The clutch hitting continued in the eighth inning and this time the heroics belonged to Eric Fisher who lined a single to left field to send Brian Anderson home for the eventual game-winning run. Killian worked a perfect ninth, including a strikeout of Austen Smith to end the game.
The Razorbacks will look for their first SEC series victory of the year Sunday afternoon as the weekend finale is set for 1:05 p.m. on Cox Sports Television and ESPN3.
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Coach Van Horn Quotes
Head Coach Dave Van Horn (opening statement) – "This was a great win for our team after trailing for basically seven innings. The run we gave up is probably a play that could've been made. The wind kind of affected it. It was just an incredible job by (RHP) Trey Killian. He showed a lot of heart. What you saw today was what we got last week from him at Florida when we got beat 1-0. We haven't really backed him up all year. He's been incredible the last three weekends. He has a lot of toughness to him, and he battled. I know his pitch count was getting up there, but I guarantee you if we tried to take him out there in the ninth, he would've went crazy. He deserved to stay out there and finish that thing if at all possible. But just a good job by our team battling. We put together three consecutive hits with two outs to tie it, and obviously we got a base hit by (1B) Eric Fisher in a left-on-left matchup with an 0-2 count. He took an 0-2 pitch and slapped it to left to give us the lead. That was a big at bat."
Head Coach Dave Van Horn (on saving the bullpen) – "It was huge. It was big for us. Going into Sunday, that's the biggest game of the weekend obviously now for us and for them. It helps us at least feel a little better about being able matchup or use a couple guys that maybe went last night that didn't have good outings that are ready to get back on that mound. We also saved two guys we were looking at going with today, (LHP) Michael Gunn being one of them and (RHP) Jacob Stone being the other. We have a couple more we could throw in there. I'm sure it will be a great ball game tomorrow."
· Trey Killian has allowed three earned runs over his last 24.0 innings of work and is one of just two pitchers in the SEC with multiple complete games this season. He worked four 1-2-3 innings and retired 14 of the final 15 batters he faced.
· Krisjon Wilkerson's two hits gave him six multi-hit games on the year to tie Brian Anderson for the team lead.
· Tyler Spoon, Clark Eagan and Eric Fisher all extended their hitting streaks to five games.
· Brian Anderson's hit by pitch in the first inning was the 41st hit by pitch for the team this season. Arkansas has been hit by at least one pitch in six straight games and 17 of 20 contests on the year.
· Official attendance of 9,036 is the highest of any Arkansas game this season.
· Saturday marked the first victory of the season when the opponent scored first and when the Razorbacks trailed after six innings.
How They Scored
· Arkansas 0, Alabama 1; Top 3rd: Ben Moore singled to shallow right field, Chance Vincent scored from second base.
· Arkansas 1, Alabama 1; Bottom 7th: Michael Bernal singled down the right field line, Krisjon Wilkerson scored from third base.
· Arkansas 2, Alabama 1; Bottom 8th: Eric Fisher singled to left field, Brian Anderson scored from second base.