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SEC Weekly Roundup (March 28-31): Clear Top Hog

We’re halfway through the college baseball season and there is a clear number in the SEC – and perhaps in all of college baseball. 


The Arkansas Razorbacks are 8-1 in conference play after sweeping LSU this past weekend, and they’ve lost just three games the entire season. 


In an era of college baseball where offense is on the rise again, Arkansas sets itself apart with a dominating pitching staff. They lead all of Division 1 with a 2.67 team ERA, and they’ve struck out 334 in 229.1 innings. 


Hagan Smith leads that staff with his 72 strikeouts in 35 innings with a 1.54 ERA. This past weekend against LSU he racked up 10 of those over 6 innings allowing just 2 runs on 5 hits in a 7-4 Arkansas win. 


Mason Molina had a strong start in game two, but then the bullpen tossed 5 scoreless innings allowing the Razorbacks to walk it off in the 10th inning. 

In the finale, Peyton Stovall delivered with 3 RBI including a 3-run homer that led to a 7-5 win. 



We may not be able to ignore Kentucky much longer as they are also off to an 8-1 start in conference play and have only lost four games on the year. 


Their pitching has also been sneaky good and ranks in the top 10 in Division 1. But in SEC play, the offense has been putting up some big numbers. They’ve scored 9 or more runs in six-of-eight SEC games. 


This past weekend in a sweep of Ole Miss they won 5-3, 17-9, and 15-1 (7). 


In game one, Trey Pooser allowed just 2 earned runs over 5.2 innings to pick up the win. 


On Friday, Nolan McCarthy hit a pair of home runs and drove in six. 

James McCoy had a double, homer, and 3 RBI in the finale. 


It was the first time in the program’s history they swept Ole Miss on the road. 



Florida can’t figure out those midweek games, but on the weekend they continue to come away with series wins. 


A big part of that is Jac Caglianone on Sundays. They’ve won every Sunday game this year, and in the last five series they’ve split the first two games and then won the series on Sunday behind the arm and bat of Cags. 


This past weekend against Mississippi State was quite the battle. Trailing 6-2 going into the 8th inning on Friday they scored 2 runs, and then in the ninth they scored 3 more runs to walk it off. 


Cade Kurland had an RBI double in the 8th and then the walk-off hit in the ninth. 

Mississippi State starter Khal Stephen was good in this game allowing just 2 earned runs on 3 hits and 2 walks over 6 innings with 8 strikeouts. 


The Gators tried Brandon Neely as a starter in this game but he gave up 5 runs in 3.1 innings. 


In the second game, Mississippi State made sure to put away the Gators this time scoring 12 runs. Dakota Jordan and Connor Hujsak each went deep twice in the 12-2 win. 


Jurrangelo Cijntje was good on the mound for Mississippi State giving up 2 runs on 5 hits over 7 innings with 8 strikeouts. 


In the finale, the Bulldogs got to Cags in the sixth as he ultimately gave up 3 earned runs over 5.2 innings. But Luke McNeillie came in to shut things down the rest of the way on the mound for Florida. 


That kept the offense within reach, and as the tweet says, “Jac Caglianone is inevitable” as he gets the 2-run walk-off homer. 



Alabama was able to bounce back at home against South Carolina this past weekend with a series win. 


Eli Jones was really good for South Carolina in the game one loss as Alabama came back scoring 2 runs in the seventh and 1 run in the eighth on a wild pitch to take the lead and win 4-3. 


In game two, Alabama broke open a 6-6 tie with a 7-run eighth inning. Kade Snell got the scoring started with a 2-RBI double. 

Ian Patrutz had a 3-run homer in the inning and drove in a total of 5 runs. 


The Gamecocks escaped the road series with a 9-8 win in game three, holding off a comeback attempt in the ninth where the Crimson Tide scored 4 runs and made the final out at third base on a weird play. 


The weekend got off to a rough start for Tennessee as Georgia pounded them in a 16-2 win in 7 innings. 


What makes the win even more impressive for Georgia is that Charlie Condon was just 1-4 without a home run as others stepped up. Leadoff man, Corey Collins, went deep twice and drove in 6. 


Condon did unleash in game two going 5-6 with 2 home runs, but the Volunteers were able to outslug the Bulldogs in a 16-11 win. 


Tennessee left fielder, Dylan Dreiling, also hit a pair of home runs and he drove in 7 of the 16 runs the Volunteers scored. 


After scoring 27 runs in the first two games of the series, the Georgia offense was shutout in a 7-0 for Tennessee in the finale. Zander Sechrist and Nate Snead combined for the shutout allowing just 6 hits and 1 walk with 8 strikeouts. 

Dreiling had 3 more hits as did Kavares Tears for the Tennessee offense. 



It’s tough to win on the road in the SEC, and especially at Blue Bell Park as Auburn found out this past weekend after getting swept by Texas A&M in three close games. 


The Aggies took advantage of Auburn’s pitching mistakes in game one with 3 runs in the 6th inning thanks to a walk, walk, hit batter, hit batter, and another walk. They went on to win that one 9-7. 


Braden Montgomery, who had 4 home runs on the weekend, hit two of them in the second game – a 12-8 win for Texas A&M. Auburn’s Ike Irish hit a grand slam in the ninth to make the final score look a little closer. 


The Tigers tried to claw their way to a win in the third game scoring 3 runs in the eighth to tie it, and then after giving the lead back in the bottom half, Gavin Miller hit a game-tying home run in the 9th. 


Then the offenses went silent for a while before Ted Burton sent the home crowd away happy with this walk-off hit to cap off the sweep. 


Vanderbilt had the quietest sweep of the weekend taking down Missouri 3-1, 4-0, and 3-1. 


Starters Greysen Carter (8.1 IP, 3 H, 1 BB, 0 ER, 11 Ks), Bryce Cunningham (7 IP, 1 H, 2 BB, 0 ER, 12 Ks), and Carter Holton (7 IP, 5 H, 1 BB, 1 ER, 8 Ks) combined to allow just 1 earned run on the week over 22.1 innings with 31 strikeouts. 


Davis Diaz had a good weekend at the plate for Vanderbilt driving in 5 of the 10 runs scored by Vanderbilt. 



SEC Power Rankings

Tier 1

  1. Arkansas

Tier 2

  1. Texas A&M

  2. Florida

  3. Tennessee 

Tier 3

  1. Vanderbilt 

  2. Alabama

  3. Kentucky

  4. LSU

  5. Mississippi State

  6. South Carolina

Tier 4

  1. Georgia 

  2. Ole Miss

  3. Auburn

Tier 5

  1. Missouri

 

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