Andrew Hutchinson is a multimedia reporter for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He is a graduate of the University of Arkansas.
Diamond Hogs Lose Rubber Game
Chris Oliver, University of Arkansas pitcher, finished 2-2 with a 2.25 ERA in 14 games this season for the Razorbacks.
FAYETTEVILLE Arkansas could not figure out Mississippi State's pitchers Sunday at Dudy Noble Field in Starkville, Miss.
The Razorbacks struck out 14 times in the 5-1 loss and dropped their second SEC series of the season. It was the Bulldogs' first series win against the Razorbacks since they won two out of three games in 2008.
Chris Oliver pitched 6 1/3 innings, but gave up four earned runs and took the loss. He allowed seven hits and one walk while striking out three.
Half of those runs came in the first inning on a two-run home run by Alex Detz in the Bulldogs' second at bat of the game.
That lead was cut to one in the fourth inning when Brian Anderson hit an RBI-single up the middle. A single by KJ Wilkerson put runners on the corners with one out and forced Mississippi State to replace its starting pitcher, Trevor Fitts, after only 3 1/3 innings.
The threat did not produce any more runs, however, as Jacob Lindgren came into the game and retired the first 12 batters he faced. Lindgren earned the win and struck out eight Razorbacks.
Mississippi State added insurance runs in the fifth, seventh and eighth innings.
Arkansas threatened again in the eighth inning, getting two runners on base with one out and forcing the Bulldogs to make another pitching change.
They brought in closer Jonathan Holder, who gave up a single to Anderson to load the bases, but struck out Eric Fisher to end the inning.
Holder finished the game for Mississippi State and picked up the five-out save.
The loss drops Arkansas to 17-10 on the season and 4-5 in SEC play. It is the Razorbacks worst start in conference play since going 3-6 in the first three SEC series in 2011.
Arkansas returns to Baum Stadium to play five games in five days starting Tuesday. The Razorbacks will play Nebraska Tuesday and Wednesday, followed by a three-game series against South Carolina that starts Thursday.