Gage Wood records second save, No. 5 Arkansas takes series at Ole Miss
Batesville alum Gage Wood held the Ole Miss bats in check over the final three innings, allowing one run on three hits, striking out four as No. 5 Arkansas beat Ole Miss 6-4 at Swayze Field Saturday.
It’s the freshman’s second save in as many outings, he last pitched six days ago in the Diamond Hogs’ 5-4 win over Alabama. He’s now struck out 19 batters over 13 innings pitched, owning a 3.46 earned run average.
“We were hoping that Gage could take us to the house, so to speak and, man, he did it,” head coach Dave Van Horn said. “Gage just kept getting after it and throwing strikes and being able to throw that off-speed pitch even behind in the count was big.”
Wood was able to find success, throwing in a slider with the usual fastball and curveball pitch mix. It’s a pitch that the freshman says he found a better feel for over the past couple of weeks.
“I lost my slider a little bit and then once we got it back on track, we watched film about a week and a half ago, maybe two weeks, we were watching film and we really talked about getting that slider working and I can think of many times today where I used that slider and I got swings and misses and I even struck out their best hitter in my opinion,” Wood said.
Wood also talked about his rising confidence level on the bump after the win.
“I really just have to know that I can do it and that I’m the man for the job and that I’m going to go out there and do it,” Wood added. “So once I really figured that out and developed kind of like almost like a killer instinct, me and coach [Matt] Hobbs talked about it here a couple of months back, and then once I started doing that, it’s really helped tremendously.”
Arkansas (25-6, 8-4 SEC) struck first in the top of the third inning thanks to a Caleb Cali solo home run. He scored three times, going 2-3 at the dish.
The Rebels (18-12, 2-10 SEC) would not go away, tying it at 1-1 in the bottom of the fourth, then tying the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the fifth after a Jacob Gonzalez two-run home run.
The Diamond Hogs would take the lead for good in the top of the seventh after singles from Tavian Josenberger and Peyton Stovall. They have now won four straight regular season series against the Rebels.
Arkansas will host an in-state foe next. The Razorbacks will host Little Rock at Baum-Walker Stadium on Tuesday, April 11 at 6:30 p.m. on SEC Network+.
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