Hogs Defeat Omaha

Razorback junior center-fielder Tavian Josenberger (#12) from Kansas City, MO heads to home plate after hammering a two run homerun deep over the right field fence against Omaha Tuesday night at Baum-Walker Stadium in Fayetteville, AR.

By Otis Kirk

FAYETTEVILLE — No. 6 Arkansas earned a run-rule victory over Omaha 16-3 on Tuesday night in Baum-Walker Stadium. 

The Razorbacks actually trailed in this game 2-1 heading to the bottom of the second. But the Hogs exploded for five runs in the bottom of the second and then seven more in the third to separate from the visitor. Dave Van Horn was pleased to see the offensive explosion.

“On the offensive end, what I like from our team is that we didn’t go out of the zone much,” Van Horn said. “We didn’t chase, and it set up some big innings for us. When they did throw it over the plate, we hit it pretty good. 

“Just really unselfish by the offense tonight. I thought they did a great job of just letting the next guy work and taking a walk. That’s what we did. Now we’ve got to get ready for Alabama.”

In addition, Arkansas got outstanding pitching from Batesville’s Gage Wood (1-0) who worked two innings in relief of starter Ben Bybee. Wood didn’t allow any hits, walked one and struck out three while facing seven hitters. Wood had good stuff on Tuesday night with 22 of his 36 pitches strikes. 

“Bybee was a little wild,” Van Horn said. “That’s why we went and got him. I thought Wood came in and did a great job.”

Omaha got all three of its runs and hits off of Bybee. In addition to Wood, Arkansas got an inning each from Ben McLaughlin, Christian Foutch and Parker Coil. None of the four out of the bullpen allowed a hit over the final five innings. 

In the bottom of the second, Arkansas took the lead for good. They scored their five runs on two hits, four walks, fielder’s choice and a hit by pitch. 

Tavian Josenberger was perfect in four at bats with two hits and a pair of walks. He hit a two-run home run in the bottom of third. Kendall Diggs had three hits. Diggs, Jared Wegner, Peyton Stovall and John Bolton each knocked in a pair of runs. Jace Bohrofen got two hits on the night and knocked in three runs. Van Horn praised Josenberger’s power and hitting.

“Tavian’s a game hitter, if you know what I’m saying,” Van Horn said. “He just has good at bats. Batting practice, he doesn’t hit the ball out of the park in BP. You know he can, but he just works on things. To answer your question, I didn’t recruit him to come in here and hit double-digit homers. I just wanted him to get on base and score runs. He does have power, obviously. He just missed a pitch the pitch before and you could tell he was frustrated like, ‘Why did I take that?’ He kind of got the same type pitch and he didn’t miss it. He’s got some power.”

Wyatt Sellers (2-1) took the loss for Omaha (7-11). Arkansas 21-4, 4-2) will be at home this weekend to host Alabama (20-6, 2-4) in SEC play. Friday’s game is set for 6:30 p.m. On Saturday, first pitch is 2 p.m. Sunday’s first pitch is also at 2 p.m. and the game televised on the SEC Network.

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