Athens, GA - Georgia freshman Sean McLaughlin pitched his first career complete game, but it was not enough as the 14th-ranked Razorbacks rallied for a 2-1 win Saturday.
He blanked the Razorbacks for seven innings and took a 1-0 lead to the eighth when Arkansas scored twice and held on to clinch the series over the Bulldogs (16-28, 4-16 SEC). Arkansas reliever Jalen Beeks picked up the win to improve to 5-1 while McLaughlin fell to 4-5. Colby Suggs pitched the ninth for his seventh save.
Georgia was unable to string together enough hits and left 10 on base against Arkansas ace Ryne Stanek who went 6.2 innings and allowed seven hits and three walks but just one run. Arkansas (29-15, 13-7 SEC) was held to only five hits but was able to piece together some timely hitting in the eighth inning for the win.
Georgia threatened in the fourth with back-to-back hits by Hunter Cole and Jared Walsh but was unable to convert on the scoring opportunity with runners on second and third with one out. Kyle Farmer extended his hitting streak to nine games in the fifth inning but Georgia was not able to capitalize.
Arkansas had their first runner in scoring position with their second hit of the day with a sharp single off of the bat of Brian Anderson in the sixth. Anderson advanced to second on a close play and later to third on a wild pitch. Arkansas was unable to plate the run with an inning ending strike out looking.
Georgia plated the first run of the game in the seventh. After a leadoff walk by Nelson Ward, Curt Powell moved him over on a bunt single. Ward stole third base and was then knocked in compliments of a sacrifice fly by Farmer, his NCAA-leading tenth sacrifice of the season.
The Razorbacks answered back in the eighth with a leadoff double to center by Jacob Mahan. Jake Wise singled to left driving in Mahan. Joe Serrano singled in Wise plating the second Razorback run of the inning and that concluded the scoring.
“We continue to battle, and Sean was outstanding, but they put a couple of their hits together and came up with two runs and that was enough,” said Georgia coach David Perno. “We’re playing the right way, playing good defense, it’s tough to put anything together against their pitching staff. Still, I thought we did as good as job as anybody against (Ryne) Stanek. We’ll have to come out Sunday and hopefully come through when we get our opportunities with men on base.”
The series concludes Sunday with first pitch slated for 2:05 p.m. and be televised by CSS.