#16 Arkansas opens weekend series Thursday vs. San Diego State - KAIT-Jonesboro, AR-News, weather, sports

#16 Arkansas opens weekend series Thursday vs. San Diego State

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FAYETTEVILLE (ArkansasRazorbacks.com) – The No. 19 Arkansas baseball team opens a nine-game homestand this weekend as it welcomes San Diego State to Baum Stadium for a four-game series. The Razorbacks and Aztecs will meet at 6:05 p.m. on Thursday, 3:05 p.m. on Friday, 11:35 a.m. on Saturday and 12:05 p.m. on Sunday.
   
All four games of this weekend's series will be available on RazorVision through ArkansasRazorbacks.com and on the Razorback Baseball Radio Network from IMG. Three-time Arkansas Sportscaster of the Year Chuck Barrett and former Arkansas Sports Information Director Rick Schaeffer will call the action on Thursday, Friday and Sunday. Brock Bowling will have the call for Saturday's game. A live blog and live stats for each game will be available on ArkansasRazorbacks.com. Fans can also follow updates of each game on @RazorbackBSB, the official Twitter account of the Razorback baseball team.

Single-game tickets for the San Diego State series are still available. Tickets are $10 for reserved seats and may be purchased by calling 1-800-982-HOGS (4647), by visiting the online ticket center at ArkansasRazorbacks.com or on gameday at Baum Stadium, while supplies last.
   
Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn enters the weekend in reach of a major career milestone. Coach Van Horn needs just three more wins to reach 1,000 victories in his coaching career. Entering the weekend, Coach Van Horn's career record stands at 997-468.
   
Arkansas brings a 7-5 record into this weekend's series vs. San Diego State. The Razorbacks went 0-4 last weekend in the Coca-Cola Classic in Surprise, Ariz. Arkansas dropped two games to then-No. 25 Arizona State and one game each to Gonzaga and Pacific.
   
Brett McAfee led the Razorbacks at the plate during last weekend's tournament, hitting .455 with a RBI and two stolen bases. Tyler Spoon batted .438 with a pair of RBI and two stolen bases in the four games. Dominic Ficociello made his season debut and went 3-for-10 at the plate.
   
For the season, Arkansas is batting .285. Spoon has hit safely in all 12 games this season and is hitting a team-leading .391 with two homers and a team-high 15 RBI. Brian Anderson is batting .357 with seven RBI, while Joe Serrano, who has reached base in 10 consecutive games, has a .306 batting average with five RBI. Matt Vinson is hitting .300 with three RBI and a team-high 13 runs scored.
   
The Razorback pitching staff has a 1.82 team ERA on the season, which ranks second in the SEC and eighth nationally. Arkansas will start freshman southpaw Colin Poché in the series opener on Thursday. Poché has pitched in two games, including one start, and has a 1-0 record with a 0.00 ERA. On Friday, junior right hander Ryne Stanek is schedule to take the mound for the Razorbacks. Stanek has a 1-1 record with a 2.84 ERA in three starts. Freshman righty Trey Killian will start on Saturday. Killian has appeared in three games, with two starts, and has a 1-1 record with a 1.29 ERA. He currently leads the SEC with an opponent batting average of .128. In the series finale on Sunday, senior left hander Randall Fant will start for Arkansas. Fant made his season debut last Sunday vs. Pacific and allowed a run, while striking out five in four innings of work.

Junior right hander Barrett Astin returns to the bullpen this weekend for Arkansas. Astin, who has started the first three weeks of the season, has a 1-1 record with a 1.65 ERA. Jalen Beeks has pitched in a team-leading six games and is 1-0 with one save and a 1.93 ERA. Brandon Moore has appeared in four games and has a 1-1 record with a 1.98 ERA.

San Diego State enters the weekend series with a 7-5 record, including a 4-1 record away from home. The Aztecs have posted three-game series sweeps over then-No. 12 San Diego and Seton Hall this season. Last weekend, SDSU swept a three-game series from Seton Hall.

The Aztecs are hitting .249 as a team. San Diego State is led at the plate by Jake Romanski, who is hitting .378 with a RBI and three stolen bases. Greg Allen is batting .353 with seven RBI and a team-high five stolen bases. Tim Zier has driven in a team-leading 10 runs and has stolen three bases.

On the mound, SDSU has a team ERA of 3.95. Sophomore righty Michael Cederoth will start the series opener on Thursday. Cederoth has a 1-1 record with a 2.60 ERA in three starts this season. Junior right hander Philip Walby will start Friday's contest. Walby has started three games and is 1-1 with a 1.12 ERA. Senior righty Ryan Doran is the scheduled starter for Saturday. Doran has a 2-1 record with a 3.32 ERA in three starts. The Aztecs have not announced a starter for Sunday's series finale.

In relief, Bubba Derby has four saves for San Diego State and has a 1-0 record with a 1.00 ERA in six appearances. Justin Hepner and Ethan Miller have each pitched in five games out of the bullpen. Hepner has one save and a 3.38 ERA, while Miller is 1-0 with a 3.27 ERA.

Arkansas and San Diego State have met five times previously with the Razorbacks winning four of the five games. Arkansas won three of four games from the Aztecs in the team's last series in 2011.

Series Schedule (Times Central and Subject to Change) – Fayetteville, Ark.

Thursday, March 7 – 6:05 p.m.
Friday, March 8 – 3:05 p.m.
Saturday, March 9 – 11:35 a.m.
Sunday, March 10 – 1:05 p.m.

Live Game Coverage
Television/Webcast: ArkansasRazorbacks.com
Radio: Razorback Baseball Radio Network from IMG
Live Stats & Live Blog: ArkansasRazorbacks.com
Twitter: www.twitter.com/RazorbackBSB

Ticket Information
Single-game tickets for the San Diego State series are still available. Tickets are $10 for reserved seats and may be purchased by calling 1-800-982-HOGS (4647), by visiting the online ticket center at ArkansasRazorbacks.com or on gameday at Baum Stadium, while supplies last.

Probable Pitching Matchups (Arkansas listed first)
Thursday (6:05 p.m.)
LHP Colin Poché (Fr., 1-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Michael Cederoth (So., 1-1, 2.60)
Friday (3:05 p.m.)
RHP Ryne Stanek (Jr., 1-1, 2.84) vs. RHP Philip Walby (Jr., 1-1, 1.12)
Saturday (11:35 a.m.)
RHP Trey Killian (Fr., 1-1, 1.29) vs. RHP Ryan Doran (Sr., 2-1, 3.32)
Sunday (12:05 p.m.)
LHP Randall Fant (Sr., 0-0, 2.25) vs. TBA

Rankings
Arkansas – No. 16 (Baseball America/NCBWA/Perfect Game), No. 19 (USA Today Coaches), No. 29 (Collegiate Baseball)
San Diego State – Not Ranked

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