Midweek cleared after cancellation

By: Bob Holt
Published: Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn walks to the dugout Saturday, April 20, 2013, before the start of play against Texas A&M at Baum Stadium in Fayetteville.
Photo by Andy Shupe
Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn walks to the dugout Saturday, April 20, 2013, before the start of play against Texas A&M at Baum Stadium in Fayetteville.

FAYETTEVILLE - After Arkansas beat Texas A&M 2-1 on Sunday, Razorbacks Coach Dave Van Horn said his focus was on the next SEC series at Georgia, not so much the next scheduled game against Oklahoma.

“To us, I’ll be honest with you, we want to win weekend series,” Van Horn said. “We want to beat Oklahoma, but I’m not going to go out there and wear us out and pitch us to death.

“Hopefully, we’ll swing the bats and hang in there with OU and beat them. If don’t we don’t, we don’t. We’ll get ready for Georgia.”

Now Van Horn doesn’t need to worry about beating the Sooners or wearing out his players before they play Georgia.

The Arkansas-Oklahoma game scheduled for tonight at Baum Stadium has been cancelled because of the weather forecast, which calls for rain and cold temperatures. The game will not be made up.

For the first time in three weeks, the Razorbacks (27-15, 11-7) won’t play any games between SEC series. They open a three-game series at Georgia (15-26, 4-14) on Friday night.

The previous two times Arkansas didn’t play any midweek games, the Razorbacks swept a three-game series at South Carolina and took two out of three games at Alabama.

Arkansas is second in the SEC West standings, four games behind LSU (15-3) and a game ahead of Mississippi State (10-8) and Ole Miss (10-8).

The Razorbacks are tied with South Carolina (11-7) for the SEC’s third-best record behind Vanderbilt (16-2) and LSU.

Last week, Arkansas went 2-3, including a doubleheader loss at Nebraska in which the Razorbacks were no-hit in the opener, but they remain ranked in several national polls released Monday, including No. 14 in Baseball America, No. 15 in the USA Today coaches poll and No. 16 by Collegiate Baseball. They were ranked No. 12 in the Baseball America and USA Today polls and No. 13 by Collegiate Baseball last week.

“I don’t even know where we’re ranked,” Van Horn said Sunday. “Sometimes I wonder why we’re ranked, you know?

“It’s weekend to weekend.

We have a good team. … We’re just trying to build.” Beating Texas A&M on Sunday gave Arkansas the series victory after the Aggies rallied to win 5-3 Friday night and the Razorbacks won 12-2 on Saturday night.

When Texas A&M overcame a 3-1 deficit after seven innings to win Friday night, it extended the Razorbacks’ losing streak to four games and dropped them to 2-7 in a nine game stretch.

“The SEC is a grind,” Arkansas catcher Jake Wise said. “There are great teams every weekend. There are no breaks.

“Everybody has good arms, everybody has good bats, and you’re going to lose some close games. It just shows the toughness of the team to come back and keep fighting, not give up and win a one-run game on Sunday.”

Van Horn said the Razorbacks had a positive team meeting when they returned home from Nebraska.

“We’ve got to get it together, play hard, hang in there,”Van Horn said of his message to the players. “There were a lot of things talked about, and I think it helped and they responded really well.”

Sports, Pages 17 on 04/23/2013