OMAHA, Neb. – The No. 9 Texas Tech baseball team rallied for two runs in the ninth inning, but fell to No. 5 Arkansas, 7-4, during Wednesday’s winner’s bracket matchup at T.D. Ameritrade Park in Omaha.
The Red Raiders (45-19) finished the day with four runs on six hits against the Razorbacks (46-19). Tech will face Florida (48-20) on Thursday at 7 p.m. CT on ESPNU, which the Red Raiders defeated, 6-3, on Sunday in their College World Series opener.
Tech’s six hits came from six different batters, as sophomore Brian Klein drove in two runs, while fellow sophomore Josh Jung’s knock was his 100th of the year. It is the first time since 1998 (Josh Bard – 101) Tech has had a player with 100 or more hits in a season and tied Clint Bryant’s total from 1996 as the fifth-most in a single year.
Junior right-handed pitcher Davis Martin got the starting nod in Tech’s second game at the 2018 CWS but went 3.2 innings against the Hogs. He allowed five runs on six hits, with one walk and six strikeouts. Senior RHP Jose Quezada was strong out of the pen for the Red Raiders, tossing 3.1 innings with just three hits given up, one run charged and two strikeouts on the day.
Arkansas struck first in the opening frame with two runs for an early 2-0 lead. A single and a double, both to right field, from Cole and Martin began the game, then a two-out double to right-center field from Fletcher brought the duo home to put the Razorbacks ahead.
In the second and fourth innings, Gates and Fletcher both hit lead-off solo homers to push the advantage to 4-0. Later in the fourth, Biggers sent a two-out single to right field to score Shaddy, who walked after the homer.
The Red Raiders got on the board in the bottom of the fifth thanks to a two-out double from Klein. Senior Michael Davis and junior Cody Farhat reached to open the frame on a strikeout/wild pitch and a walk, then were scored on Klein’s double to the right field wall to make it 5-2.
However, Arkansas erased the two runs in the top of the eighth to push the lead back to a five-run spread at 7-2. Back-to-back singles from Martin and Kjerstad started the frame, then a pair of one-out knocks to right field from Fletcher and Shaddy platted the two runs for the Hogs.
Tech closed the gap to 7-4 in the ninth as Cameron Warren led off with a walk, and Davis followed with a double down the leftfield line. Farhat cranked a two-run single down the right field line to score both runs.
The Red Raiders will have a rematch with Florida during an elimination contest on Thursday, June 21, at 7 p.m. CT on ESPNU.