Baseball pounds No. 1 Arkansas, 13-6
April 11, 2009
View Box Score | Season Stats | Friday's Recap: VU 9, UA 0
The Commodores (21-13, 7-7 SEC) claimed the series with the win, marking the first ever time they have done it in Fayetteville. They were 5-13 in six previous trips to Arkansas. The 13 runs tied the most VU has ever scored against the Razorbacks (March 15, 1997).
"We came out strong today and put together a couple of big innings," said Vanderbilt head coach Tim Corbin. "We did some things in certain situations which we have to do against a good club like Arkansas. You are always afraid that the momentum can change quickly in this ballpark and anything we can do to get it on our side is much needed."
The Razorbacks dropped a SEC series for the first time this season, falling to 24-8 overall and 10-4 in league action.
Vanderbilt had a 2-0 lead in the fifth when Brian Harris led off with a walk. Riley Reynolds singled through the left side and both runners advanced a base as left fielder Jacob House let the ball roll underneath his legs. After a strikeout, the Razorbacks intentionally walked Andrew Giobbi to load the bases and set up a potential double play. Steven Liddle then singled to right to score two and after Casali walked, Aaron Westlake reached on an error by pitcher Mike Bolsinger when he did not catch a force throw at first. Two runs came in on the mistake to make it 6-0. Jason Esposito was hit by a pitch and Joe Loftus singled to right to plate two more. Brian Harris added a RBI single, Riley Reynolds a sac bunt RBI and Jonathan White a RBI single to close out the nine-run inning.
Caleb Cotham carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning before Brett Eibner broke it up with a solo homer to right. It was the first run for the Razorbacks in the series and they added three more in the frame on another solo homer by Ryan Cisterna and a two-run shot by Andy Wilkins to make it 11-4.
Cotham (5-3) ended up with a career-high 12 strikeouts in seven innings of work. He allowed just five hits with only one walk in his second straight winning performance.
"Mikie (Minor) threw the ball incredibly well last night and it helped my confidence seeing what he did and trying to build on it," said Cotham. "I tried to establish my fastball in and out and find spots to throw my off-speed pitches and it worked out for me today.
VU responded right back in the seventh with two runs on a RBI single by Riley Reynolds and another on a throwing error by catcher Ryan Cisterna on a run down at third.
Arkansas added two runs in the ninth to close out the game scoring.
"We definitely tried to take the momentum early and take the crowd out of the game early," said Liddle. "It was great to see the guys get quality bats as far as moving guys over, getting walks, hit by pitches and bringing runs in."
The Dores took a 2-0 lead in the third, scoring on a RBI groundout by Andrew Giobbi and a solo homer by Steven Liddle, his fifth round-tripper of the year. Jonathan White singled to left with one out and then moved all the way to third on a throwing error by pitcher TJ Forrest on a failed pick off attempt to first. Giobbi then grounded to short to score White.
The Commodores and Razorbacks will play the final game of the three game series Sunday afternoon at 1:05 p.m. Arkansas will throw right-hander Brett Eibner (3-2, 3.18 ERA), while Vanderbilt will counter with freshman right-hander Sonny Gray (2-0, 1.83 ERA).
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