LIVE UPDATES: Hogs Bowed Up for Incredibly Rare Presidents’ Day Coincidence

Arkansas baseball, James Madison baseball, Presidents' Day, Arkansas vs James Madison

FAYETTEVILLE — Monday afternoon’s series finale of the Arkansas vs James Madison series was important for the Razorbacks to avoid a split, but it also has a historic aspect worth noting.

Presidents’ Day comes around once a year, but playing on one is a much less common event for Arkansas baseball. Indeed, it’s only happened a handful of times in the 21st century.

Today, Arkansas only only played on the federal holiday, but did so against a university named after an actual U.S. president.

How rare is that coincidence?

It’s a safe assumption this is the first time any Razorback team has ever done it. Beyond that, however, it’s also a fairly safe bet that this is new ground for any SEC baseball program.

Consider that only two Division I universities qualify as potential opponents for such a coincidence – James Madison University and George Washington University.

The James Madison baseball program has only played in February since the mid 1980s, and before today played on Monday in that month only once. That happened in 1996, on the fourth Monday of February, so today appears to be the first Presidents Day game in which James Madison has ever competed.

George Washington University, meanwhile, has played in only four Monday games since 1999. Only one of those was played on Presidents Day. That was on February 19, 2007 and resulted in a 2-15 loss to Virginia.

Playing the Virginia Cavaliers is a lot more common for universities based in that part of the nation, so it’s very likely Arkansas was the first SEC program to ever get a shot at a Founding Father on the day dedicated to them.

And they sure made the most of the opportunity, racking up a 4-0 win.

Below are the inning-by-inning updates from the “historic” Arkansas vs James Madison matchup…

LIVE UPDATES – Arkansas vs James Madison (Game 4)

Pregame Tidbits

REMINDER: There is a curfew for today’s Arkansas vs James Madison game. No inning can start after 3 p.m. because the Dukes have a plane to catch at XNA.

The Razorbacks went back to most of their starters from the first two games, with one notable exception: Parker Rowland starting at catcher. That means Hudson White is back at DH. Jayson Jones is starting in left field.

T-1st: Arkansas 0, James Madison 0

  • Mancini swung at the first pitch of the game and hit a sinking line drive into left, but Jones ran in and made a diving catch. 1 out.
  • Trimble followed with a grounder up the middle that Holt got to and then fired it to first for the out. He made the tough play look smooth. 2 outs.
  • Dooley flied out to center to end the inning. That was a nice 12-pitch inning for Fisher.

B-1st: Arkansas 2, James Madison 0

  • Diggs started off the bottom of the first with a line drive into center for a single.
  • White followed with a grounder that the second baseman fielded, but his throw was wild and went out of play. Not only did White reach, but he got to move to second. That also put Diggs at third.
  • In an 0-1 count, McLaughlin lined a single into center to drive in both runs and give Arkansas an early 2-0 lead.
  • Aloy popped out in foul territory, caught by the third baseman. 1 out.
  • Holt followed with a chopper that got through the left side for another single for the Hogs.
  • After struggling to make contact on Opening Day, Jones ripped a line drive to left. It was caught, but it had a 109 mph exit velocity. That’s good to see from the sophomore. 2 outs.
  • With two outs and two on, Sprague-Lott grounded out to third to end the inning.

T-2nd: Arkansas 2, James Madison 0

  • What a tremendous catch by Aloy. It looked like O’Donnell’s fly ball would fall in no-man’s land in left, but Aloy ran back and nonchalantly stuck his glove out for an over-the-shoulder catch. Wow. 1 out.
  • Calabrese hit a fly ball down the right field line and Diggs was able to run over and catch it just in foul territory. 2 outs.
  • Steinberg ended the inning with a fly out to center. That’s six up, six down for Fisher, who has thrown 21 pitches. Five of his six outs were in the air.

B-2nd: Arkansas 2, James Madison 0

  • Rowland worked the count full and drew a walk in his first plate appearance of 2024.
  • He was promptly erased when Wilmsmeyer grounded into a 4-6-3 double play. 2 outs.
  • Diggs ended the inning by flying out to left. Smith has thrown 35 pitches through two innings for JMU.

T-3rd: Arkansas 2, James Madison 0

  • Fisher finally allowed a base runner when Schiavone led off the third with a single just out of the reach of a diving Aloy at shortstop.
  • Peifer tried to bunt the runner over, but couldn’t get it down and eventually found himself in a full count before looking at strike three. It was a perfect pitch by Fisher on the corner. 1 out.
    • A failed pickoff attempt (E1) moved the runner to second anyways.
  • Fisher had Schmidly down 0-2, but hit him with a pitch to put runners on first and second with the top of the order coming up for JMU.
  • Mancini hit a chopper to second that Holt fielded cleanly. Schmidly was running and didn’t stop, allowing Holt to tag him before throwing to first to complete the inning-ending 4-3 double play. Fisher is up to 40 pitches through three innings.

B-3rd: Arkansas 3, James Madison 0

  • White ripped a double down the left field line on the first pitch of Arkansas’ half of the third inning. It’s his third straight game with a double and he’s got an extra-base hit in all four games.
  • McLaughlin smoked a line drive to right with a 107 mph exit velocity, but the left fielder didn’t have to move much to catch it. 1 out.
  • Aloy hit a chopper back to the pitcher, who snagged it. Even though he dropped the ball, Smith was able to pick it up and have plenty of time to throw out Aloy at first. It did move White to third, though.
  • Jones swung at the first pitch he saw and smoked it 107 mph up the middle for an RBI single.
  • That was it for Arkansas, as Sprague-Lott flied out to center to end the inning.

T-4th: Arkansas 3, James Madison 0

  • Trimble grounded out to second on the first pitch of the fourth inning. 1 out.
  • Dooley was also first-pitch swinging and he singled to left.
  • Fisher bounced back with a strikeout of O’Donnell. 2 outs.
  • Calabrese also went down swinging. 3 outs. That’s four scoreless for the freshman, who’s up to three strikeouts and 51 total pitches.

B-4th: Arkansas 3, James Madison 0

  • Rowland grounded out to second. 1 out.
  • Fisher lined out to right. 2 outs.
  • Diggs hit a sharp grounder to the right side, but the second baseman made a nice diving stop and threw him out. Quick work by Smith, as he needed just seven pitches to get through the inning.

T-5th: Arkansas 3, James Madison 0

  • Steinberg swung at the first pitch and hit a chopper back to Fisher, who fielded it cleanly and easily got the out at first. 1 out.
  • Schiavone looked at a 92 mph fastball that hit the inside corner for strike three. 2 outs.
  • Peifer was also first-pitch swinging and hit a single through the left side.
  • In a 3-1 count, Rowland visited his pitcher on the mound and whatever he said seemed to do the trick. On the next pitch, Fisher got Schmidly to fly out to right to end the inning. Fisher is at 63 pitches through five scoreless.

B-5th: Arkansas 3, James Madison 0

  • Swinging at the first pitch, White got just a little too much under it and hit a fly ball to left. It was caught shy of the track. 1 out.
  • McLaughlin struck out on three pitches, looking at the third. 2 outs.
  • Aloy smoked a single through the left side to give Arkansas a two-out base runner. It had a 109 mph exit velocity.
  • Holt hit a grounder to the left side and the third baseman was aligned where he could snag it and then toss to second for the force. Smith is at 68 pitches for JMU.

T-6th: Arkansas 3, James Madison 0

  • Now pitching for Arkansas is right-hander Koty Frank. It’s his second appearance of the season, as he also threw 33 pitches in 2 1/3 innings on Saturday.
    • Final line for Fisher: 5 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 K, 63 pitches (38 strikes)
  • Nice backhand by Holt to field a grounder by Mancini. He threw to first for the out. 1 out.
  • Trimble followed with a line out to right. 2 outs.
  • Dooley fouled off several pitches before swinging and missing for a strikeout. Frank threw 16 pitches in the 1-2-3 frame.

B-6th: Arkansas 3, James Madison 0

  • After crushing the ball his first two times up, Jones barely got a piece of it this time and fouled it up where the first baseman was able to catch it along the base line. 1 out.
  • Sprague-Lott looks at strike three. 2 outs.
  • On the 11th pitch of the at bat, Rowland flied out to center to end the inning.

T-7th: Arkansas 3, James Madison 0

  • Right-hander Will McEntire is now pitching for Arkansas. He threw 71 pitches in 5 2/3 innings on Friday.
  • O’Donnell went down swinging. 1 out.
  • Calabrese also struck out swinging. 2 outs.
  • McEntire also struck out Steinberg. That was impressive.

B-7th: Arkansas 4, James Madison 0

  • James Madison has a new pitcher: Right-hander TJ Brooks, who also pitched on Saturday.
  • Wilmsmeyer walked on five pitches to start the inning.
  • Diggs also walked on five pitches and that prompting a pitching change. The new pitcher for JMU is right-hander Matt Kleinfelter, who also pitched in the first two games of the series.
  • White tried to lay down a bunt, but couldn’t do it. Instead, he hit a line drive to the third baseman. It looked like JMU would double off Wilmsmeyer at first, but the throw got away. The E5 allowed the base runners to move to second and third.
  • JMU intentionally walked McLaughlin to load the bases.
  • Aloy delivered. In an 0-2 count, he lined an RBI single to center to give Arkansas an insurance run.
  • With the bases still loaded, Holt struck out on three pitches. 2 outs.
  • Arkansas left them loaded, as Jones flied out to right to end the inning.

T-8th: Arkansas 4, James Madison 0

  • McEntire is back out to pitch the eighth and he got Schiavone to ground out to short. 1 out.
  • Peifer hit a grounder to first and McLaughlin made a nice stop, then tossed to McEntire for the out. 2 outs.
  • Kyle Langley pinch hit for Schmidly and hit a ball up the middle that Holt got to, but couldn’t make the throw. It’s an infield single.
  • The inning ended with another diving catch by Jones, robbing Mancini of a hit to end the inning.

B-8th: Arkansas 4, James Madison 0

  • The new pitcher for James Madison is right-hander Hunter Entsminger.
  • Sprague-Lott went down swinging to start the inning. 1 out.
  • Rowland lined out to right, with the right fielder tracking it down in front of the wall. He hit it 102 mph off the bat, though. 2 outs.
  • Wilmsmeyer ends the inning by grounding out to second.

T-9th: Arkansas 4, James Madison 0

  • Now pitching for Arkansas is left-hander Stone Hewlett, the Kansas transfer.
  • Despite facing a righty, Hewlett got Trimble to ground out to short. 1 out.
  • In a full count, Dooley drew a one-out walk.
  • O’Donnell hit a grounder to third that looked like it should have been an out, but Sprague-Lott’s throw took McLaughlin on the bag and O’Donnell slid under the tag. He reaches on the E5.
    • JMU pulled off a double steal to put runners on second and third. Rowland’s throw to second was right on the money, but Holt dropped it.
  • Hewlett bounced back to strike out Calabrese. 2 outs.
  • Steinberg hit a slow roller down the first base line and Hewlett calmy fielded it and threw to first to end the game.

FINAL: Arkansas 4, James Madison 0

For more from Arkansas vs James Madison, go here:

Starting Lineups

James Madison BaseballArkansas Baseball
1. Mike Mancini – 2B1. Kendall Diggs – RF
2. Fenwick Trimble – CF2. Hudson White – DH
3. Ryan Dooley – LF3. Ben McLaughlin – 1B
4. Brendan O’Donnell – RF4. Wehiwa Aloy – SS
5. Coleman Calabrese – SS5. Peyton Holt – 2B
6. Jacob Steinberg – 1B6. Jayson Jones – LF
7. Jason Schiavone – C7. Jared Sprague-Lott – 3B
8. Wyatt Peifer – 3B8. Parker Rowland – C
9. Ike Schmidly – DH9. Ty Wilmsmeyer – CF
Pitching: RHP Casey SmithPitching: LHP Colin Fisher


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