An offensive outburst and a stellar start from Connor Noland propelled Arkansas to a 17-2 win over Stanford in the opening round of the College World Series on Saturday afternoon at Charles Schwab Field Omaha.
Noland was terrific in picking up his team-leading eighth win and 10th quality start of the season, allowing two runs on six hits over 7 2/3 innings and just 79 pitches. After a leadoff home run in the bottom of the first inning from Brock Jones, Noland settled in and cruised through the Cardinal lineup.
The right-hander used an inning-ending, double play to conclude the first and set off a streak of 10 straight retired before a leadoff single snapped the streak in the bottom of the 5th. He sat down eight straight to work into the bottom of the 8th before his first walk of the afternoon ended that streak.
With Noland cruising, the Arkansas offense kicked into high gear in the 5th with five runs to give the senior all he needed to keep the Razorbacks in the winner’s bracket. Back-to-back singles from Brady Slavens and Cayden Wallace started the inning before Chris Lanzilli’s three-run homer into the left field seats delivered the big blow and the lead. Robert Moore scored on a wild pitch and Zack Gregory’s RBI-single capped the rally.
The Hogs weren’t done, however, adding three more runs in the 7th, two more in the 8th and piled on with six more in the 9th while setting a program record for hits and runs in a College World Series game with 21 and 17, respectively.
Moore ripped a leadoff double into the right field corner to open the 8th and immediately scored on a Jalen Battles single. Battles came around to score on single from Slavens and Brayden Webb touched home plate thanks to a two-out double from Wallace.
In the 8th, freshman Peyton Stovall joined the hit parade with a two-run single to give all nine Hogs in the lineup at least one hit. Wallace’s 16th home run of the season found the bleachers in right-center field for a two-run shot in the top of the 9th.
Michael Turner led the way with four hits in his first career College World Series game, singling four times on the afternoon. Wallace drove in three runs with three hits, and Stovall drove in a game-high four runs with a pair of singles. All nine Arkansas starters had at least two hits in the victory. Arkansas advances to take on Ole Miss Monday night at 6 PM on ESPN.
Arkansas head baseball coach Dave Van Horn, pitcher Connor Noland, and INF Chris Lanzilli all talked about the dominant win after the game. Video is courtesy of the NCAA and The College World Series.