The Arkansas Razorbacks scored eight runs in a sixth inning interrupted by a 2 hour and 47 minute weather delay en route to an 11-5 victory Sunday over the Texas Longhorns in the College World Series.
In the CWS opener for both teams, Arkansas sent 14 batters to the plate in the inning against six Texas pitchers.
The Razorbacks punched out six singles and took advantage of four walks and one batter that was hit by a pitch.
It was a nightmarish experience for the Longhorns, who are playing in the CWS for the first time since 2014.
The outburst lifted Arkansas into an 11-2 lead. Texas scored two in the eighth and one in the ninth during garbage time.
After the Razorbacks recorded the lopsided victory, they advanced in the winners’ bracket to meet either Florida or Texas Tech.
The Longhorns, in turn, will play the Florida-Texas Tech loser in an elimination game. Both games are set for Tuesday.
The world series is being played at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Nebraska.
Stars of the game
Arkansas — Senior Luke Bonfield hit a two-run homer in the fifth to lift Arkansas into a 3-2 lead. Freshman Heston Kjerstad produced three hits, including a two-run single in the sixth inning. Pitcher Blaine Knight (13-0) remained undefeated after working five innings.
Texas — Austin Todd slapped a two-run single in the eighth inning to give the Longhorns a lift. Tate Shaw was 3 for 3 with a triple and a run scored. Kody Clemens, the star of the playoffs for Texas, had one hit in five at bats.
Texas coach David Pierce, on whether he felt Arkansas was that good of a team offensively:
“They were today. I thought early in the game we pitched well. You just can’t afford to pitch behind (in the count) against Arkansas. And that’s what happened when we got unraveled.
“Either we pitched behind or we tried to get strike one and threw white-on-white
instead of a quality pitch.
“I’m not shellshocked. It’s just part of it. It’s not the way wished it had gone. Unortunately, it got away from us and we … ust couldn’t overcome the deficit.”
BOOM. 3-2 HOGS ?
— Razorback Baseball (@RazorbackBSB) June 17, 2018
After Texas took a one-run lead, Arkansas retaliated with two runs in the bottom of the fifth and two more in the sixth to take charge.
The outburst that knocked out Texas starter Nolan Kingham left the Razorbacks in the lead, 5-2, when the game was suspended for a weather delay because of lightning in the area.
In the fifth, Kingham found trouble with a walk and then a two-run homer by Luke Bonfield.
Arkansas continued to apply pressure in the sixth with a couple of singles that forced Texas to go to its bullpen.
Texas reliever Parker Joe Robinson promptly walked two to force in the first run.
Josh Sawyer entered the game for Robinson, but he issued another walk, allowing the Razorbacks to score again.
Texas takes the lead
With Texas trailing by one early, the Longhorns scored in the third and the fifth innings in rallies sparked by Tate Shaw for a 2-1 lead.
In the third, Tate Shaw opened the inning with a triple to right center off Arkansas ace Blaine Knight.
Ryan Reyenolds brought him home with a chopper that Knight gloved and continued on to touch first for the unassisted play.
In the fifth, the Longhorns put men at first and second without hitting the ball out of the infield.
First, Masen Hibbeler reached on an infield single. Next, Shaw bunted for another hit.
Aftr Reynolds moved the runners up with a bunt sacrifice, David Shaw delivered with an RBI fly ball.
Texas left a runner stranded at third when Knight struck out Duke Ellis to end the threat.
Starters last five innings
Arkansas Blaine Knight and Texas’ Nolan Kingham both exited after picthing five innings.
Knight gave up two runs on four hits. He walked one and struck out four. Kingham allowed five runs on nine hits. He also walked one and fanned four.
— NCAA Baseball (@NCAACWS) June 17, 2018
The Arkansas Razorbacks have jumped out front, 1-0, on Texas on Day 2 of the College World Series.
It’s Arkansas’ Blaine Knight, still undefeated this season, against Texas’ Nolan Kingham.
Highlights to this point for Arkansas?
A three-hit, first inning produces one run. Heston Kjerstad laces a one-out single off Kingham to make it 1-0.
Hogs leave runners stranded at first and third.
Texas makes better contact in the second inning off Knight, including D.J. Petrinsky’s line drive to left that nearly goes out of the park.
In the bottom of the second, Arkansas is scoreless but UT second baseman Kody Clemens was flexing his right (throwing) hand after an attempt to field a hard smash off the bat of Jared Gates.
Arkansas 11, Texas 5
Texas Tech vs. Florida, 6 p.m.
North Carolina 8, Oregon State 6
Mississippi State 1, Washington 0