Matt Jones is the online sports director for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. A double graduate of the University of Arkansas, he is a member of the Football Writers Association of America and National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, and voter for the Heisman Trophy.
Pallette to get Game 1 start for Razorbacks vs. Murray State
Arkansas pitcher Peyton Pallette throws during a game against Texas on Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021, in Arlington, Texas.
FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas second-year right hander Peyton Pallette has moved into the No. 1 role for the Razorbacks’ series against Murray State.
Pallette, who has struck out 16 and has not allowed a run through 9 1/3 innings this season, is scheduled to start Friday’s game that begins at 3 p.m. Right hander Caleb Bolden will start Saturday and left hander Lael Lockhart will start Sunday, his third consecutive Game 3 start of the weekend.
Pallette replaces Zebulon Vermillion as the Game 1 starter for the top-ranked Razorbacks (7-0). Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn said earlier this week that Vermillion might move back to the bullpen after struggling with command in his first two outings.
Bolden will get a start for the second consecutive week. He recorded just one out against Southeast Missouri State last Thursday, but threw four innings of scoreless relief in his first outing of the season against Texas. Bolden was the SEC co-pitcher of the week following the Texas game.
Lockhart has been involved in two no-decisions in starts against TCU and SEMO. He has allowed 4 runs and struck out 13 through 8 innings.
Murray State (5-3) plans to start left hander Shane Burns on Friday, right hander Sam Gardner on Saturday and right hander Jack Wenninger on Sunday.
Burns, a third-year sophomore, was selected All-Ohio Valley Conference prior to the season and was All-OVC freshman in 2019.
Burns has pitched twice this season and brings a 6.23 ERA to Fayetteville. He has allowed 12 hits, walked 5 and struck out 4 in 8 2/3 innings.
Gardner, a fourth-year junior , transferred to Murray State from Alabama following the 2018 season. He struggled in a loss to Purdue Fort Wayne last week when he allowed 4 runs on 5 hits walked 3 batters in 3 innings.
Gardner pitched at Baum-Walker Stadium as a freshman at Alabama. In the final 2 1/3 innings of the Crimson Tide’s 7-4 loss to Arkansas in Game 2 of the series, Gardner gave up a solo home run to Luke Bonfield, allowed 2 other hits and struck out 2 Razorbacks.
Wenninger, a freshman, struck out seven in five innings of a win over Purdue Fort Wayne last week. Wenninger gave up an unearned run on two hits and did not walk a batter.
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