FAYETTEVILLE (ArkansasRazorbacks.com) – The Arkansas bullpen threw seven shutout innings and allowed just one hit, while the Razorback offense erased an early two-run deficit with 10 straight runs as No. 3 Arkansas defeated Nevada 10-2 on Wednesday night at Baum Stadium.
The Razorbacks won their 10th straight game and improved to 20-2 on the season, matching the best start to a season since the 2005 team also opened that season with a 20-2 record. Nevada fell to 10-9 with the loss.
The Arkansas bullpen was outstanding in relief of starter Mark Reyes. Five Arkansas pitchers combined to give up just one hit in seven shutout innings, while striking out 10.
Chris Oliver picked up the first win of his collegiate career, striking out four and not allowing a hit in three innings of work.
Trent Daniel, Colby Suggs, Ty Wright and Michael Gunn each threw a scoreless inning out of the bullpen.
Reyes started on the mound for Arkansas and gave up two runs on two hits and struck out three in two innings.
Four different Razorbacks recorded multiple hits at the plate, led by Sam Bates, who went 3-for-4 with three runs scored. Jimmy Bosco went 2-for-4 with two RBI, while Jacob Morris drove in a game-high three runs and had two hits in five at bats. Tim Carver also went 2-for-4 with a RBI. Matt Vinson reached base three times with three walks and scored two runs.
Kewby Meyer had the only two RBI of the game for the Wolf Pack and went 1-for-4. Carlos Escobar Jr. and Joe Kohan each had a hit for Nevada.
Nevada starter Troy Marks suffered the loss to drop to 0-2 on the season. Marks gave up four runs, just one earned, on four hits in two innings.
Nevada struck first with two runs in the top of the first. With one out, the next three Wolf Pack batters reached as Kyle Hunt was hit by a pitch, Brett Jones walked and Austin Byler was hit by a pitch. After a strikeout of Brooks Klein for the second out of the inning, Kewby Meyer hit a two-RBI single to left field to score Hunt and Jones.
Arkansas took the lead for good with four runs in the bottom of the second. Bates led off the inning with a single to center and then moved to second on a ground out to third by Jacob Mahan. After a walk to Vinson put runners on first and second, Morris had a single to center to score Bates from second. The center fielder's throw came all the way to the catcher, who then threw high to first and down the right field line, allowing both Vinson and Morris to score. John Clay Reeves then reached on a two-base fielding error by the third baseman and came in to score on a two-out double by Bosco.
The Razorbacks tacked on two more runs in the bottom of the third. Bates, Mahan and Vinson each walked to start the inning. Morris brought home a pair of runs with a double down the right field line to put Arkansas in front 6-2.
Arkansas added two more runs in the bottom of the fifth. Vinson drew a leadoff walk and then moved to third on a single to center by Reeves. A base hit to right field by Carver brought home Vinson and Bosco followed with a single to center field to score Reeves.
The Razorbacks closed the scoring with two runs in the bottom of the eighth. Bosco was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. After the next two batters were retired, Bates singled to center to move Bosco to second. A wild pitch advanced both runners to scoring position and Mahan drew a walk to load the bases. Conor Costello came through with a two-out single to left field to score two runs.
Arkansas resumes Southeastern Conference play this weekend as it travels to Starkville, Miss., to face the Mississippi State Bulldogs. First pitch is set for 6:30 p.m. on Friday, 2 p.m. on Saturday and 12 p.m. on Sunday. The series finale on Sunday will be televised by FSN and SportSouth.