Rally falls short for Bulldogs in Game 2 at Arkansas

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – The Diamond Dawgs battled back but could not get over the hump, as Mississippi State fell 5-4 to Arkansas in Southeastern Conference baseball action Saturday night at Baum Stadium.

After the Bulldogs (12-8, 0-2) struck first in the second inning, Arkansas (16-4, 2-0 SEC) grabbed the lead for good with five runs in the bottom half of the inning and made that outburst stand up to clinch the three-game conference series.

The Bulldogs battled back with two runs in third inning and another score in the seventh inning but could not capitalize for more in the seventh inning, stranding a pair of base runners.

“We needed one more hit,” head coach Andy Cannizaro said. “One-run games are really difficult on this team right now. We showed a lot of fight to battle back. The bullpen did a great job of giving us a chance.”

After Peyton Plumlee (2-1) was touched for five hits and five runs (all earned) in 1.2 innings of work, the Bulldogs went to the bullpen and got good results.

Denver McQuary and Jacob Barton combined for 6.1 innings of shutout relief, allowing two hits with three strikeouts.

The Razorbacks struck for a pair of home runs in the second inning and have scored all eight runs in the series via the long ball.

The Bulldogs scored first in the second inning when Brent Rooker and Luke Alexander each singled. Rooker scored on a ground ball out.

In the third inning, Cody Brown drew a one-out walk. Ryan Gridley followed with a single, as did Rooker. Rooker’s hit brought home Brown. An error scored the Bulldogs’ third run.

Rooker had a sacrifice fly in the seventh inning but the Bulldogs could get no closer.

Jake Mangum and Rooker each had two hits for the Bulldogs, who finished with seven hits.

Arkansas also had seven hits. Carson Shaddy had two hits, including a two-run home run. Chad Spanberger hit a three-run home run.

Trevor Stephan (4-0) was lifted with one out in the seventh inning and got the win. Cannon Chadwick earned his second save.

The series between the Bulldogs and Razorbacks will wrap up at 1 p.m. today. The game will air on SEC Network+ through WatchESPN.com and the Watch ESPN app.

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