LSU wins 2-0 behind Walker's complete game
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Freshman right-hander Eric Walker fired his first career complete game Sunday to lead No. 13 LSU to a 2-0 win over 14th-ranked Arkansas at Baum Stadium.
LSU, which won its sixth consecutive SEC series against Arkansas, improved to 22-11 overall and 7-5 in the SEC. Arkansas dropped to 25-8 overall and 8-4 in conference play.
The Tigers are just one game out of first place in the SEC Western Division behind Arkansas and Auburn, which dropped a 3-1 decision to Texas A&M on Sunday.
LSU will face Louisiana-Lafayette at 7 p.m. CT Tuesday in the annual Wally Pontiff Jr. Baseball Classic in Metairie, La. The game will be played at “The Shrine on Airline,” formerly known as Zephyr Field and home of the New Orleans Baby Cakes, the AAA affiliate of the Miami Marlins.
Tuesday’s LSU-ULL game will be broadcast on affiliates of the LSU Sports Radio Network, and it may heard at www.LSUsports.net/live. The game will be televised on Cox Sports Television.
Walker (4-0) worked nine shutout innings, limiting Arkansas to four hits with two walks and four strikeouts. He threw 119 pitches, exceeding his previous season high of 108 pitches last week against Texas A&M.
“Eric is a young man with tremendous poise and he pitches with a lot of confidence, and he was superb today,” said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. “Our defense play exceptionally well behind him to keep a very potent Arkansas lineup from scoring. Arkansas probably has the best lineup we’ve seen all season, and it’s a credit to our kids that they were able to get a very hard-earned victory.”
LSU opened the scoring in the top of the second inning when third baseman Josh Smith walked with two outs and scored on catcher Nick Coomes’ double.
The Tigers extended the lead to 2-0 in the seventh when rightfielder Greg Deichmann smacked an RBI single to score shortstop Kramer Robertson, who had been hit by a pitch to start the inning.
Arkansas starter Josh Alberius (2-4) was charged with the loss, as he worked 3.1 innings, allowing one run on four hits with two walks and two strikeouts.