OMAHA, Neb. – Cody Masters crushed a two-out RBI triple off the wall in right center to break up a 4-4 tie in the eighth inning Monday afternoon, sending No. 8 Texas Tech past No. 5 Arkansas, 5-4, at TD Ameritrade Park.
The victory continues Tech’s stay at the College World Series as the Red Raiders (45-19) will move into another elimination Wednesday night against the loser of tonight’s Florida State and Michigan matchup. Arkansas ends its season with the loss, closing the year at 46-20 overall.
Masters’ heroics highlighted a memorable day at the plate for the Red Raiders, who connected on three home runs in the come-from-behind effort. Tech entered the afternoon with two home runs in its nine all-time games at the College World Series, the second of which came via Brian Klein two days earlier against Michigan.
The play most will remember was Masters’ shot to right center, though, as he launched a 3-1 pitch to easily score Cameron Warren all the way from first. Warren, who was running on the pitch, drew a walk to bring up Masters for his first hit of the College World Series.
Warren provided the early spark for the Red Raiders as he drilled a two-run homer in the fourth to cut into an early 3-0 lead. Tech homered in each of the next two innings as well with Easton Murrell and Josh Jung both going deep to right to tie the game and then give the Red Raiders their first lead.
The home run was the fourth during NCAA play for both Warren and Jung, which tied the Tech record for a single postseason. Warren now has a team-leading 18 home runs on the season, while Jung went deep for the 15th time. Murrell, facing his former school in Arkansas, homered for the first time at the collegiate level.
John McMillon (4-3) collected the win for the Red Raiders as he came on for a key strikeout to end the eighth. Taylor Floyd recorded the final three outs for his fourth save of the year, keeping Arkansas off the board in the ninth after the Razorbacks put two runners on to start the frame.
Caleb Kilian collected a no-decision despite a strong start where he tossed seven complete innings, allowing only three runs off six hits while also matching his career high with nine strikeouts. The right-hander found his groove in the middle frames as he only allowed a Casey Martin Double in the fifth and a Trevor Ezell single in the seventh after allowing three runs over the second and third innings.
Cody Scroggins (3-2) took the loss for Arkansas after allowing the one run in the ninth in his only inning of work. He was one of three Arkansas relievers to come on for Connor Noland, who lasted four innings, giving up two runs off four hits and two strikeouts.