Razorbacks

Diamond Hogs Pound UAPB

Nate Allen

Razorback starting pitcher Kole Ramage (#28) from Southlake, TX throws a strike against UAPB Wednesday afternoon at Baum-Walker Stadium in Fayetteville, AR.

FAYETTEVILLE – Paced by Matt Goodheart’s 4 for 4 with  two home runs, a double and single  and five RBI, four Arkansas  Razorbacks hit two home runs each totaling eight home runs while totaling the University of Arkansas-Pine Bluff Golden Lions, 26-1 Wednesday at Baum-Walker Stadium.

A pregame agreed upon 10-run rule stopped the slaughter after UAPB batted in the seventh.

The Golden Lions of the SWAC (Southwestern Athletic Conference) were far more competitive in Tuesday night’s 12-4 loss to the nationally No. 1 SEC West leading Razorbacks and fall to 2-21 overall hosting Texas Southern in  3-game SWAC series Friday through Sunday at Pine Bluff.

Coach Dave Van Horn’s Razorbacks, 28-5, host the Texas A&M Aggies in a 3-game SEC West series at Baum-Walker at 6:30 p.m. Friday, 6:30 p.m Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday.

Goodheart, Brady Slavens, 2 for 5 with five RBI, Charlie Wrelch, 2 for 4 with four RBI, and Cullen Smith, 3 for 4 with three RBI, were the Razorbacks with home runs each.

Senior Goodheart, the All-SEC designated hitter playing first base Wednesday and batting leading off for the first time as a Hog, set the tone. 

The left-handed hitter led off a 6-run first inning with a launch way over everything in right including the facilities expansion.

The one Goodheart led the game off with, it left the bat at 110 mph and it landed probably over the building completely,” Van Horn said. “That ball was hammered.”

Goodheart hit a grand slam during Arkansas’ 11-run fifth inning.  By then he also had singled and doubled. 

“DJ (Baxendale, the former Razorbacks pitcher now a student- assistant) said I should have peeled off and missed home plate intentionally and get a triple,” Goodheart said.

He then would have matched second baseman Robert Moore this season as the first Razorbacks hitting for the single, double, triple, home run cycle since Kyle Harris in 1994.

Would he rather have two home runs with one a grand slam or hit for the cycle?

“Oh, man, I don’t even know,” Goodheart said. “Those are pretty high goals right there.  I’m just happy to have good at bats and I had a lot of good at bats today.”

He obviously wasn’t the only one with the eight home runs among 17 Hogs hits and 26 runs.

Kole Ramage logged two scoreless innings and 44 pitches as the starter pulled to be available in relief against Texas A&M.

He was followed by seven relievers with none throwing more than an inning behind a lineup that started several reserves with some regulars playing in positions irregular for them.

We were thinking about going with Ramage three innings today at a max,”Van Horn said.   “But obviously we had a good lead, he’s already thrown 40-plus pitches and we thought, ‘Hey, two innings is good. Let’s just go a bunch of other guys an inning.”

By the end, Van Horn played all his position players other than outfielders Braydon Webb, who arrived feeling ill, and Zack Gregory, resting a hamstring injury from last weekend’s SEC West series at Ole Miss.

“It’s fun for the players,”  Van Horn said of playing everybody and some in unfamiliar positions. “We enjoy it as coaches, too, because there’s a lot of tight times in there when things aren’t going great. It’s fun to enjoy that, like playing these freshmen all over the field, letting them swing the bat.”

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