By John Thomas
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – No. 4 Arkansas used the home run ball five times Thursday night to pull out a 7-3 victory over 17th-ranked Texas A&M at Blue Bell Park. Arkansas has won five-straight conference series openers and 20 SEC games for the first time in the Dave Van Horn era.
Arkansas remains one game ahead of Mississippi State in the SEC Western Division with two games to play. The Bulldogs defeated South Carolina, 24-7, for their 44th victory and 19th in conference play.
The Hogs were able to get ahead of Aggie starter Chris Weber for five runs in five innings and it all began with a three-run homer by redshirt senior Trevor Ezell in the third inning. What followed was four more home runs off the bats of Casey Martin in the fifth and ninth, Matt Goodheart also in the fifth and Jack Kenley in the sixth, marking the sixth time this year and second in the last four games that the Hogs have hit four or more home runs in a game and third with five or more.
The win by No. 4 Arkansas was their 40th of the year and 20th in league play. It’s the third-straight year and fifth time in the last six years the Hogs have totaled 40 or more wins. This year’s team is the fastest Razorback team to reach 40 wins since 1989.
It’s also the first time Arkansas has won 20 or more games in SEC play since 1999 and first under head coach Dave Van Horn. Arkansas won a school-record 22 games in conference play in 1999 under long-time head coach Norm DeBriyn.
Once again, right-hander Isaiah Campbell gave Arkansas a quality outing, going six innings strong with only two runs allowed, one being earned and six strikeouts. Campbell has 10 quality starts in his last 11 outings and picked up his 10th win of the year, making him the second pitcher (Blaine Knight) in the last six years to win 10 or more games in a single season.
Arkansas and Texas A&M will be back on the field tomorrow with first pitch from Blue Bell Park at 6:30 p.m. The game will be televised online only via SEC Network+.