Arkansas can't finish off rally against South Carolina

By: Brandon Davis Special to the NWA Democrat-Gazette
Published: Monday, March 18, 2019
Arkansas starter Autumn Storms delivers a pitch against Southeast Missouri Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019, during the fourth inning at Bogle Park on the university campus in Fayetteville.
Photo by Andy Shupe
Arkansas starter Autumn Storms delivers a pitch against Southeast Missouri Thursday, Feb. 21, 2019, during the fourth inning at Bogle Park on the university campus in Fayetteville.

FAYETTEVILLE -- South Carolina escaped Fayetteville with its first SEC victory of the season on Sunday.

Leading 7-0 going into the bottom of the sixth inning, the No. 16 Gamecocks avoided a heartbreaking loss for the second consecutive day by outlasting No. 14 Arkansas 9-6 at Bogle Park. On Saturday, the Razorbacks rallied from a 4-0 deficit with seven runs in the bottom of the sixth to win 7-4.

South Carolina Coach Beverly Smith was excited to not only get the first conference victory, but to win it in enemy territory.

"Anytime you can get a win on the road, it feels good," Smith said. "I was proud of my team for staying tough and finishing strong."

South Carolina (21-7, 1-5 SEC) got off to a good start to lead 7-0 after the first 4 innings with 8 hits and taking advantage of 3 Arkansas errors: two from third baseman Haydi Bugarin and one from shortstop Aly Manzo.

Autumn Storms (10-2) had 7 hits and 7 runs scored against her in 3 1/3 innings. Reliever Mary Haff allowed three hits and struck out six batters.

Behind infielders Ashley Diaz's two-run home run and Linnie Malkin's RBI single, Arkansas (21-7, 3-3) rallied in the sixth inning with four runs and three hits off South Carolina starter Dixie Raley (6-1) and reliever Cayla Drotar.

Although the Gamecocks extended its lead to 9-4 with a two-run home run by infielder Alyssa Kumiyama in the seventh inning, the Razorbacks fought back with three hits and runs by pinch runners Sam Torres and Keely Edwards.

Smith was impressed by Arkansas' determination throughout the series.

"Arkansas played a nice weekend," Smith said. "They were tough in the late innings."

Arkansas will travel to Knoxville, Tenn., for a three-game series with the Volunteers beginning at 3 p.m. Friday.

Sports on 03/18/2019

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