Arkansas Falls Into Loser’s Bracket After Loss To Missouri State
FAYETTEVILLE (KFSM) – Arkansas had a chance to rally in the ninth inning but a controversial call went against the Razorbacks and it ended quickly after.
Luke Bonfield argued he was hit by a pitch with a runner on and no outs in the top fo the ninth but was not awarded first base. Bonfield struck out on the next pitch then Dominic Fletcher grounded into a game ending double play as Missouri State stole a 5-4 win inside Baum Stadium.
Arkansas will face Oral Roberts at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday in an elimination game while the Bears advance to the regional finals. The winner of Sunday’s Arkansas-ORU game will have to beat Missouri State twice to win the regional.
The Bears took a 5-3 lead in the sixth inning thanks to a passed ball and a RBI groundout after Arkansas loaded the bases when it struggled to find the strike zone.
Arkansas closed the gap to 5-4 as Carson Shaddy reached on a fielder’s choice and would come around to score on three wild pitches. The Razorbacks missed a chance to tie the game as Grant Koch grounded out with a runner on second.
Missouri State took a pair of early leads thanks to the long ball as Hunter Steinmetz led off the home half of the first with a solo home run then Justin Paulsen hit a two-run home run in the third inning to give the Bears a 3-1 lead.
Arkansas answered with a pair of runs of their own in the fifth as Dominic Fletcher doubled home a run down the right field line then Jax Biggers tied the game with a RBI ground out. The Razorbacks had a chance to take the lead in that fifth inning but left runners on second and third.
Blaine Knight wasn’t as effective as in previous outings but struck out eight in five and 1/3 innings of work while walking two on 105 pitches.