FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Scott Lyons reached base five times with four hits to lead the Arkansas Razorback baseball team to a 14-6 victory over Missouri State at Baum Stadium on Wednesday night.
Lyons had three singles and a double and reached base a fifth time on a fielding error by the Bears. Lyons would score three of Arkansas’ 14 runs and drive in two others. The four hit performance matches his career best which he set against South Dakota State on March 5 and is the first time a Razorback batter has had four hits in a game since Casey Coon accomplished the task on March 21.
Arkansas (27-18) picks up its second victory over Missouri State (30-14) this year and second in the month of April. The two teams faced off on the first day of the month and the Hogs came back to win a wild one in Springfield, Mo., 7-6 in 10 innings.
The Wednesday night matchup was strange from the outset as neither team’s pitchers seemed to have much going for them. Walks and hit batters dominated the early going and allowed the Bears to establish a 4-0 lead in the top of the third, but help from the Missouri State pitching staff in the bottom of the inning let the Razorbacks come back with three scores of their own without the benefit of a hit. Missouri State would walk one, hit three others and make an error contributing to the big inning.
The Hogs would tack on another five runs in the bottom of the fourth to take the lead for good. An opening walk put Lyons at the plate with a runner on and he singled through the right side putting runners at first and second. Another walk by the Razorbacks loaded the bases and two batters later, Logan Forsythe would drive in two with a single to right-center field. A Jeff Nutt single to left scored Forsythe and he would come around on a blast over the left field wall by Coon. Coon’s home run is his first since his four-hit game in March and proved to be the game-winning hit.
Arkansas would cycle through the order four times during the middle innings of the game as they sent 31 batters to the plate between the third and sixth innings. That turnover saw 13 of the 14 Arkansas runs score.
Surrendering Missouri State’s final two runs in the top of the fifth, Arkansas battled back for two of its own, and then scored another three in the sixth to put the game out of reach. The Razorbacks pounded out 13 hits on the day with all but one Arkansas starter getting at least one. Along with Lyons four, Coon, Nutt and Ben Tschepikow would each get two hits. Coon would drive in a team best three with Lyons, Nutt and Forsythe each tallying two RBI. Catcher Ryan Cisterna tacked on Arkansas’ final run in the bottom of the eighth with Arkansas’ second home run of the game.
On the mound, the Razorbacks used six pitchers with none working more than two innings. Redshirt freshman Sam Murphy started the contest by pitching two innings before handing the ball to Kendall Korbal in the third. Evan Cox (2-0), the game’s winning pitcher, tossed 1.2 innings of relief with James Mahler, Travis Hill and Brett Eibner wrapping things up.
The Razorbacks are back in action at Baum Stadium on Friday night when they host a pivotal Southeastern Conference series with the Alabama Crimson Tide. For more information regarding Razorback baseball or University of Arkansas athletics please visit www.hogwired.com.