Jayhawks Fall Just Short at No. 10 Arkansas
March 9, 2007
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. –
Senior Kyle Murphy went 3-for-5 with a career-high five RBIs Friday, but it was not enough for the Jayhawks. No. 10 Arkansas scored five runs in the bottom of the fifth to answer a five-run KU rally and held on for an 8-7 win at Baum Stadium.<?xml:namespace prefix=”o” ns=”urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office”?>
The Razorbacks improve to 11-5 on the season, while the Jayhawks drop to 11-6.
Much like the Stanford series, KU gave up a big inning, yet rallied to bring the tying run to the plate in the ninth inning.
Trailing 8-5 in the top of the ninth, Murphy hit a two-run homer to left-center off Arkansas closer Chris Rhoads to pull the Jayhawks within a run. Murphy collected as many as three hits in a game for the second time this season. His two-run blast was his second homer of the season.
However, that’s as close as it would get as Rhoads retired Robby Price and John Allman to end the game.
The game started as pitcher’s dual early, but Razorbacks drew first blood in the bottom of the third. After a walk and sacrifice bunt, Jake Dugger hit a two-run homer to right center, giving the home team a 2-0 lead.
KU broke through with five runs in the fifth inning against Arkansas starter Jess Todd. After a strikeout to start the inning, the Jayhawks collected three straight singles to right field to pull within 2-1. Juniors Ryne Price, Brock Simpson and senior Ross Kelling pulled base hits to right to ignite the rally.
Following a walk to Buck Afenir, Murphy delivered the big blow, a bases clearing double to the left-center field gap to stretch the lead to 4-2. KU tacked on another run on an error to increase the lead to 5-2.
Arkansas fought back with a five runs of their own in the bottom of the inning. After a sacrifice fly, Jeff Nutt hit a sharp ground ball that bounced off KU starter Zach Ashwood’s glove and bounded into left field to score two runs and tie the game at 5-5.
Razorback right fielder Wayne Hrozek capitalized by doubling home two more runs to give Arkansas a 7-5 lead after five.
Nutt struck again in the seventh with an RBI double to center field to extend the lead to 8-5.
Zach Ashwood suffered his second loss of the season, allowing seven runs on six hits over 4 2/3 innings. He walked two and struck out five in the game.
The teams will play the second game of the series tomorrow starting at 12:05 p.m.