Hot Bama bats prove too much for No. 6 Arkansas
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. - The Crimson Tide bats were on fire Friday night at Baum-Walker Stadium, powering Alabama baseball to a 12-1 victory over sixth-ranked Arkansas.
With the win, the Crimson Tide improves to 21-6 overall and 3-4 in Southeastern Conference action.
Alabama's offense recorded a season-high 22 hits on the way to 12 runs for the win. The Tide scored in five of the nine innings with all nine starters recording at least one hit, including eight multi-hit performances. The bats also produced four home runs with one apiece from Drew Williamson, William Hamiter, Colby Shelton and Mac Guscette.
Williamson tied for the team lead in hits with three while adding two RBI, two runs and a walk. Shelton and Guscette each tallied two hits and two runs with Shelton adding a walk and an RBI while Guscette recorded two RBI to tie for the team-best mark. Caden Rose and Tommy Seidl each matched Williamson for the team lead in hits with three.
The Tide also received a strong performance from its pitching staff. Ben Hess (4-0) picked up the win in a shortened outing, tossing 4.0 innings and allowing one run on two hits with five punchouts. Hagan Banks followed, retiring all 12 batters he faced in order across his 4.0 relief frames, before Connor Ball worked a scoreless ninth.
From Head Coach Brad Bohannon
"It was just our night. It was one of those nights where we hit a lot of balls hard, everything that we hit found a hole and we pitched great. Ben Hess gave us a really good start, and Hagan Banks was outstanding in relief. We out-hit a team 22-3 - that just doesn't happen often. I'm really proud of our effort and hope we can carry this momentum into tomorrow."
How It Happened
T2 | Caden Rose started the inning with a double. Dominic Tamez followed with a single to right to score the leadoff man and give the Tide the early lead. (1-0, Alabama)
B3 | A solo home run from Tavian Josenberger tied things up. (1-1)
T4 | Colby Shelton put the Tide back in front with a solo home run with one down. Tommy Seidl followed with a single before coming home in the next at-bat by way of a Mac Guscette homer. (4-1, Alabama)
T5 | Ed Johnson led off with a single before coming home in the next at-bat thanks to a Drew Williamson home run. A pair of singles and a walk loaded the bases with Arkansas then able to record two outs. Jim Jarvis came through with a two-run single followed by an RBI-single from Andrew Pinckney to cap the five-run frame. (9-1, Alabama)
T7 | Guscette led things off with a single and moved to third on a one-out single from Pinckney. The leadoff man came home in the next at-bat thanks to a Johnson single to score one. (10-1, Alabama)
T9 | William Hamiter added a pair with a two-run home run. He crossed Williamson, who worked a one-out walk. (12-1, Alabama)
- Alabama handed Arkansas its first loss in a series opener this season and first since May 13 of last season against Vanderbilt.
- Hagan Banks retired all 12 batters he faced in order. Included in that total was a career-high five strikeouts.
- Banks' 4.0 innings of work are also a career-best for the sophomore. His previous long outing was 3.1 at Florida on March 16, a game which he started.
- Alabama finished with 22 hits and has totaled double-digit hits in 20 games this season. The 22 hits are the most in a single game since the Tide posted 20 at College of Charleston on March 7, 2021.
- All nine Tide starters recorded at least one hit on the night.
- The Crimson Tide has homered in 22 games overall while posting multiple home runs 15 times.
- Colby Shelton belted his team-leading 12th home run of the season.
- He is now one short of the Tide's season-high total of 13 for the entire 2022 campaign.
- Shelton's 12 home runs are the most by a Tide freshman since Ross Wilson recorded 15 roundtrippers in 2008. Wilson's 15 came across 62 games played that year.
- The 15 by Wilson are tied with Jeremy Brown (1999) for the Alabama single-season record for homers by a freshman.
- Jim Jarvis extended his hitting streak to eight games dating back to March 17.
- Over that stretch, the senior is batting .367 (11-30) with a double, six RBI, seven runs, seven walks and two hit-by-pitch.
Alabama and Arkansas will return to the diamond on Saturday at 2 p.m. CT. The Crimson Tide will look to sophomore right-hander Luke Holman for the start while the Razorbacks counter with righty Will McEntire, a redshirt junior. Fans can catch Game Two of the series on SEC Network+.