When the forecast showed rain all day Monday last week, the Razorbacks baseball team was forced to change the format of the annual Fall World series. Traditionally a best of 5 game series, the Cardinal and White teams started a best of 3 game series last Tuesday.
Game 1: White 9, Cardinal 1
In game 1, freshman Patrick Wicklander looked phenomenal on the mound for Team Cardinal. Wicklander struck out 6 of the first 10 batters he faced, and finished with 8 strikeouts in 3+ innings. Once he came out, however, Team White’s bats proved too potent for Cardinal relievers, as Matt Goodheart, Casey Opitz, and Andrew Stanley combined for 6 hits and 7 RBI in the game.
Team White started Caleb Bolden on the mound, who went 4.1 innings with 3 strikeouts and 3 walks, while giving up only 1 hit and 1 run. Caden Monke came on in relief of Bolden with the bases loaded and 1 out, and only surrendered 1 run. Monke allowed only one base runner on a walk and struck out 3 in 1.2 innings.
Team Cardinal struggled at the plate in game one, with Christian Franklin and Bryson Lierle recording the team’s only two hits.
Game 2: White 12, Cardinal 4
Cody Scroggins got the start for Team White in game two and lasted 5 shutout innings allowing only 1 hit, 3 walks, and striking out 8. Caden Monke and Landon Brown made scoreless relief appearances, while Jacob Burton allowed all 4 runs, 3 earned, on 5 hits and 2 walks in 1.2 innings.
Kole Ramage did not fare as well in his start for Team Cardinal, giving up 4 earned runs on 6 hits, a walk, and striking out 2 in 2.1 innings. Jacob Kostyshock looked even worse, allowing 7 earned runs in 2.2 innings on 5 hits, 4 walks, and 5 strikeouts. The lone bright spot on the mound for Team Cardinal was Angus Denton, who threw 2 shutout innings with 2 strikeouts.
Offensively for Team White it was the Heston Kjerstad show. After being slowed with illness the week before, he showed no signs of it driving in 6 runs on 4 hits including 2 doubles and a home run, and he scored 3 runs. He fell just a triple shy of hitting for the cycle.
Casey Martin had a day of his own, driving in 2 runs on 2 doubles and scoring 2 runs, and Casey Opitz knocked in a pair of runs while going 1-for-3 with a stolen base. Jacob Nesbit and Dillon Lifrieri each had two hits for Team White, while Elijah Trest and Curtis Washington contributed a hit a piece. Washington also stole a base and scored 2 runs.
Team Cardinal had a much better game at the plate, with Zack Plunkett, Brady Disher, and Bryson Lierle all driving in a run on 1 hit apiece. Dominic Fletcher went 1-for-3 with a double, while Trey Harris and Christian Franklin each recorded a base hit.
With many new names on the fall roster this season, the past three weeks of scrimmaging will be valuable for the coaches to determine who they want to keep for the spring. The Hogs open the season February 15 at home against Eastern Illinois.