LIVE UPDATES: Hogs Failed to Flip Day Game Blues in Arkansas vs South Carolina in SEC Tournament

Ben Bybee, Arkansas baseball, Arkansas vs South Carolina, SEC Tournament
photo credit: Arkansas Athletics

The Razorbacks’ postseason journey didn’t start so auspiciously on Wednesday afternoon with Arkansas vs South Carolina in the SEC Tournament.

The 5-6 loss to the Gamecocks was a rematch of a regular-season series Arkansas won on the road in the middle of conference play, taking two of three games. However, the one game it lost that weekend was in the first half of a Saturday doubleheader that started at 11 a.m. local.

As pointed out by Best of Arkansas Sports contributor Daniel Shi, that was one of 12 day games Arkansas played during the SEC slate. The Razorbacks went just 6-6 in such games starting at 3 p.m. or earlier, compared to 14-4 in “night” games.

The middle of the day hasn’t treated Arkansas much better in the SEC Tournament so far, given the game it lost on Wednesday to South Carolina started at 12:50 p.m. CT.

See how it all unfolded below:

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LIVE UPDATES – Arkansas vs South Carolina (SEC Tournament)

Pregame Tidbits

The winner of the Arkansas vs South Carolina game will face LSU in the winner’s bracket side of the SEC Tournament on Thursday, while the loser will play Kentucky in an elimination game.

Right-hander Ben Bybee is getting the start for Arkansas. He owns a 6.00 ERA with 31 strikeouts and nine walks in 24 innings across nine appearances this season, including six starts. Opponents are hitting .274 against him.

South Carolina is going with right-hander Eli Jones, who has a 5.49 ERA with 49 strikeouts and 18 walks in a team-high 60 2/3 innings this season. Opponents are hitting .319 against him. During the regular season, he started the Gamecocks’ lone win over the Hogs, allowing just one earned run on seven hits and three walks in four innings.

T-1st: South Carolina 1, Arkansas 0

Bybee cruised through the first two batters, throwing nothing but strikes to get a couple of quick outs. Then he lost it, issuing back-to-back walks. That set up a two-out RBI single by Noland. Bybee eventually stranded runners on the corners, but he threw 22 pitches.

B-1st: South Carolina 1, Arkansas 0

Jones needed just 11 pitches to retire the Razorbacks in order, striking out Diggs and White sandwiched around a ground out by Stovall.

T-2nd: South Carolina 1, Arkansas 0

The Gamecocks went down much quicker in the second inning, with Bybee throwing only six total pitches to get a couple of fly outs and a ground out. He’s thrown 28 pitches through two innings.

B-2nd: Arkansas 1, South Carolina 1

After he led off the inning with a single, McLaughlin moved to second on a dribbler back to the pitcher by Aloy that Jones actually briefly bobbled before recovering and getting the out at first. With a runner in scoring position, Sprague-Lott poked a single the other way to drive him in and tie it up. He stole second to give Arkansas another runner in scoring position, but it came on Souza’s strikeout and then Holt grounded out to the pitcher. Holt actually hit it hard, but the grounder went off the pitcher’s foot and stopped, allowing him to make the out. Jones is up to 31 pitches through two innings.

T-3rd: South Carolina 2, Arkansas 1

Bybee issued a leadoff four-pitch walk and then gave up a single. He got an out when Jackson tried to lay down a sac bunt, but then Messina singled up the middle for an RBI. It was a perfectly executed hit-and-run, as Messina’s grounder went right to where Stovall was standing before leaving to cover the bag when Jackson took off for first. Instead of being an inning-ending double play, it’s an RBI single.

That’s it for Bybee. Right-hander Christian Foutch enters and promptly plunked Noland – who was trying to bunt – with a 98 mph fastball to load the bases. He limited the damage, though, by striking out Jones and getting Reeves to ground out.

B-3rd: South Carolina 2, Arkansas 1

Arkansas couldn’t do anything with Stovall’s two-out double. Jones is up to 45 pitches through three innings for South Carolina.

T-4th: South Carolina 2, Arkansas 1

Back out for another inning of work, Foutch gave up a one-out single to Gasas, but then retired the next two batters, including a strikeout of Petry.

B-4th: South Carolina 2, Arkansas 2

After McLaughlin reached on a leadoff walk, it looks like South Carolina got a double play when Aloy grounded it back to the pitcher, but Jones’ throw sailed into center, putting runners on the corners. He got Sprague-Lott to fly out to shallow left, but that was it for him.

Right-hander Ty Good came in from the bullpen and Arkansas countered by pinch hitting with Ryder Helfrick, who delivered a sac fly to left. That ties it up. Holt followed with a four-pitch walk, but Lovich struck out to end the inning.

T-5th: South Carolina 4, Arkansas 2

Left-hander Parker Coil is now pitching for Arkansas. He promptly plunked Jackson with his first pitch. His third pitch was crushed 419 feet to dead center for a two-run homer by Messina. He bounced back to retire three of the next four batters, issuing only a two-out walk.

B-5th: South Carolina 4, Arkansas 2

White drew a two-out walk, but that was it for the Razorbacks in the fifth.

T-6th: South Carolina 4, Arkansas 2

Right-hander Jake Faherty took over on the mound and got Casas to line out to center to start the sixth. He issued a one-out walk, but then retired the next two.

B-6th: South Carolina 4, Arkansas 2

For the third straight inning, Arkansas got a two-out walk – this time by Helfrick – but couldn’t do anything with it.

T-7th: South Carolina 4, Arkansas 2

The Gamecocks reached on a two-out error by Stovall, but Faherty wasn’t bothered by it. He retired the next two batters, even after Noland – who reached – stole second base.

B-7th: South Carolina 4, Arkansas 4

After giving South Carolina 2 2/3 hitless innings, Good allowed back-to-back singles to start the seventh. Will Edmunson led off the inning with a pinch-hit single to right-center and then Diggs smoked a single into right. That prompted another pitching change.

Left-hander Garrett Gainey is the new pitcher for the Gamecocks. Stovall crushed a deep shot to straight away center that got over the center fielder’s head for an RBI double. Diggs held up at third. White followed with a walk to load the bases. McLaughlin nearly gave the Razorbacks the lead, but Petry made an incredible diving catch near the line to rob him of a hit. Instead, it was just a game-tying sac fly. It also allowed Stovall to tag up, putting runners on the corners with one out. That’s where they were stranded, though, as Aloy struck out and Sprague-Lott lined out.

T-8th: South Carolina 4, Arkansas 4

Right-hander Gabe Gaeckle is now pitching for Arkansas. He struck out the side, with a two-out single by Brinling mixed in.

B-8th: South Carolina 4, Arkansas 4

The Razorbacks went down in order with a couple of strikeouts in the eighth.

T-9th: South Carolina 6, Arkansas 4

Gaeckle plunked the leadoff man in the ninth and then gave up a 419-foot bomb to Messina. It’s the first homer the freshman has allowed this year. After getting a ground out, Gaeckle walked Tippett and Reeves followed with a perfectly executed hit-and-run to put runners on the corners. That’s where they were stranded after a pop out and ground out.

B-9th: South Carolina 6, Arkansas 5

Diggs hit a rocket back up the middle, but South Carolina was positioned perfectly, so it’s just a ground out to short. Stovall followed with an infield single for his third hit of the game. With two strikes, White smoked through the left side for a single, putting the tying runs on base and prompting a mound visit by the Gamecocks’ pitching coach. McLaughlin singled into left-center to drive in a run and make it a one-run game.

Aloy followed with a grounder that could have been a double play, but he beat the throw at first. The Hogs also survived a challenge from South Carolina, which was hoping for an interference call on the slide by Ty Wilmsmeyer, who pinch ran for McLaughlin. That put runners on the corners, but Sprague-Lott flied out to center to end it.

FINAL – South Carolina 6, Arkansas 5

Starting Lineup

South Carolina BaseballArkansas Baseball
1. Austin Brinling – CF1. Kendall Diggs – RF
2. Ethan Petry – 1B2. Peyton Stovall – 2B
3. Blake Jackson – RF3. Hudson White – C
4. Cole Messina – C4. Ben McLaughlin – 1B
5. Parker Noland – 2B5. Wehiwa Aloy – SS
6. Kennedy Jones – LF6. Jared Sprague-Lott – 3B
7. Dalton Reeves – DH7. Nolan Souza – DH
8. Talmadge LeCroy – SS8. Peyton Holt – CF
9. Gavin Casas – 3B9. Ross Lovich – LF
Pitching: RHP Eli JonesPitching: RHP Ben Bybee

How to Watch Arkansas vs South Carolina (SEC Tournament)

Date: Wednesday, May 22

Location: Hoover Metropolitan Stadium (Hoover, Ala.)

First Pitch: 12:50 p.m. CT

TV/Stream: SEC Network


Check out our coverage of the Arkansas vs South Carolina regular-season series:


More coverage of Arkansas baseball from BoAS…

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