Virginia Sends Arkansas to NCAA Regional Elimination Game Against Bucknell


CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The University of Arkansas baseball team managed just two hits falling to top-seeded Virginia in NCAA Regional action in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday.

Arkansas (39-24) recorded hits in the fifth and ninth innings falling to the host Cavaliers (46-13), 3-0.  The loss moves the Razorbacks into an elimination game with Bucknell at noon Central Sunday.  The winner of that game advances to face Virginia in the night game.  The loser is eliminated.  The game airs on  Check local listings for other availability.

Virginia scored first in the bottom of the opening stanza igniting the more than 5,000 fans at Davenport Field. With one out, the Razorbacks committed their first error of the NCAA postseason allowing the Cavaliers a baserunner.

The Arkansas starter, righty Trey Killian, fell behind in the count, 3-1, to Mike Papi and the lefty hitter lifted a two-run shot over the right field fence allowing the home team to strike first.  Virginia managed another base runner but Killian got a line drive and a ground ball to end the threat.

Virginia added a third run in the bottom of the third inning getting three hits in the frame.  With one out, Mike Papi laced a single up the middle to start things off.  Killian got a strikeout for out number two but back-to-back singles off the bats of Derek Fisher and Kenny Towns plated Papi for the Cavaliers.

The Razorbacks had a pair of baserunners getting walks in the first and third innings but were held hitless until the bats came to life in the top of the fifth inning.

Eric Fisher led off with a double lacing the 3-1 pitch down the right field line to the fence as he cruised around the bases and went into second standing up.  Tyler Spoon tapped a ground ball back to the mound in the next at bat and the Cavaliers’ pitcher Nathan Kirby looked the Fisher back at second.  Kirby then rushed the throw to first to get Spoon and threw the ball away allowing the Razorbacks to push runners to second and third.

Kirby, the ACC Pitcher of the Year, rallied with a strikeout, line drive and ground ball to end the Razorback threat. Kirby pitched a gem throwing eight innings and allowing one hit, walking two and striking out nine.  Kirby retired the last 12 men he faced.

Killian was lifted in the bottom of the fourth inning after what appeared be a blister became a problem.  His stat line included 3.3 innings, allowing three runs on seven hits, walking one and striking out one.  Dominic Taccolini came in on the hill and threw the final 4.2 innings allowing two hits and striking out four.

* The Razorbacks fall to 39-24 overall in 2014.
* In a 5-game span, Arkansas will face the SEC, ACC and Big South Pitcher of the Year. Hogs have won 10 of last 14 games.
* The Razorbacks are making their 13th consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and 27th overall.
* Arkansas is 65-57 all-time in the NCAA Tournament.
* Arkansas is 47-38 in NCAA Regional action.
* Arkansas is 9-5 in NCAA Regional openers over the last 13 years.
* Arkansas faces Bucknell in game three of Regional action.
* Bucknell (31-20-1) defeated Liberty in the early game Saturday.
* Arkansas turned its SEC-leading 60th double play of the year in the second inning.

Bucknell Preview:

The No. 2 seed Arkansas baseball team will battle No. 4 seed Bucknell Sunday at noon in a win or go home game in the NCAA Charlottesville Regional.

TV/Video Coverage
Sunday’s NCAA Regional elimination game will be broadcasted on ESPN3 with Paul Loeffler and Jay Walker on the call.

Game Links: Tickets | Live Stats | TV: ESPN3

Tournament Central

Radio Coverage
Every game of the NCAA Tournament will be broadcasted on the Razorback Radio Network from IMG College with Chuck Barrett and Rick Schaeffer providing the call. For a complete list of affiliates click here.

Probable Pitchers
Sunday (Noon): BU – RHP Andrew Andreychik (5-4, 3.56) vs. ARK – LHP Jalen Beeks (5-4, 2.11)

Arkansas in the NCAA Tournament
• The Razorbacks are making their 13th straight NCAA Tournament appearance and 27th overall. Arkansas is in search of its sixth Super Regional Appearance and eighth College World Series.

• The Razorbacks are taking on Bucknell for just the second time in program history on Sunday. The two teams last met during the 2003 NCAA Austin Regional, also in an elimination game, with Arkansas winning 10-7.

• Arkansas is 1-1 in elimination games this season, defeating Ole Miss 8-7 in the SEC Tournament after trailing 6-0, and falling 11-1 to LSU.

• If the Razorbacks can force a rematch with Virginia, it will be the 26th ranked opponent Arkansas has played this season, and the 15th ranked inside the top 10.

With a Win
A win would send Arkansas into a rematch with Virginia Sunday evening at 6 p.m. CT. The Razorbacks would need to beat the Cavaliers Sunday night to force a Monday winner take all game.

Beeks Back in Action
After not pitching in 29 days due to soreness in his shoulder, junior left-handed pitcher Jalen Beeks returns to the hill Sunday looking to keep Arkansas’ season alive in the NCAA Tournament. He allowed two earned runs or less in 10 of his 12 starts.

Recent Regional Success
Arkansas has won three of its last five NCAA Regionals, and gone on to the College World Series two of those three years. The Razorbacks have posted a 14-6 record in the last six NCAA Regionals, including a pair of perfect 3-0 marks, which came on the road.

Facing a Former Hog
Bucknell head coach Scott Heather is in his second season at the helm of the Bison and is a former Razorback pitcher, lettering at Arkansas in 1997 and 1998. He then became a student assistant in 1999 when the Razorbacks won their first SEC Championship.

Virginia Sends Arkansas to NCAA Regional Elimination Game Against Bucknell