June 16, 2012

CWS Game 3 Notes


Baxendale, Moore combine on four-hitter for Arkansas

By Phil Stanton

CollegeBaseballInsider.com Co-Founder


Photos by Craig Jackson, LeftfieldLounge.com, @leftfieldlounge


OMAHA, Neb. – That Razorback pitching continued to shine.


D.J. Baxendale (right) and Brandon Moore combined on a four-hitter as Arkansas downed Kent State 8-1 on the second day of the 2012 College World Series in front of 23,980 fans at TD Ameritrade Park.


Razorbacks (45-20) will face the winner of the Florida-South Carolina contest on Monday at 8 p.m. CT. The Golden Flashes (46-19) will take on the loser of that game at 4 p.m. CT Monday in an elimination contest.


Baxendale (8-5) did not allow a hit until the fifth, a two-out single to Sawyer Polen. Baxendale finished with three hits and one run with one walk and five strikeouts.


“I thought D.J. was incredible,” said Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn. “I knew after the first inning he had it because he threw every fastball right where he wanted it in the first inning, and that's a tell tale sign for him in watching him pitch for three years. It's been a big pleasure and hopefully we'll get him out there again before this is over with.”

Moore worked the final 2.2 innings with one hit. Seven of his eight outs came as the result of ground balls.


Arkansas pitching is 6-1 in the NCAA Tournament with a 1.86 ERA. The Razorbacks have walked 22 and struck out 43 in 63 innings. The Razorbacks entered the CWS with the best team ERA of the field at 2.90.


KSU starter David Starn (11-4) struggled on the mound, surrendering six hits, six walks and five runs in 5.2 innings with four strikeouts.


“They hit in some pretty positive counts,” said KSU head coach Scott Stricklin. “What David's really good at is getting ahead and working ahead. When you looked at it, David faced 26 hitters and only two of them struck at the first pitch. I think that was the key. They got ahead in the count.”


Starn walked three in the first before an infield hit by Brian Anderson brought home Tim Carver with the game’s first run. A double play by the KSU defense ended the threat, the first of four twin-killings for the Golden Flashes.


Jake Wise doubled the lead with a two-out homer to left center, his second round-tripper of the season, as the Hogs took a 2-0 advantage.


Arkansas tacked on a run in the fifth as Wise drew a leadoff walk, was sacrificed to second and came in on a base hit by Joe Serrano to make it 3-0.


KSU lit the scoreboard in the sixth as Jimmy Rider launched a homer to left to narrow the gap to 3-1.


Arkansas answered with a two-out rally in the bottom of the frame. Bo Bigham had a two-out double and Derrick Bleeker walked. Matt Vinson, who had struck out in his first two at-bats, laced a double to left, plating both Bigham and Bleeker to make it 5-1. It ended the day for Starn.


The Razorbacks put it away with three in the eighth. Anderson scored on a wild pitch and Wise added a two-run single as the advantage grew to 8-1.


Wise finished with three RBI, while Serrano went 3 for 3 for Arkansas.


(photo courtesy of Arkansas Media Relations Office)