HOOVER, Ala. – The SEC's Pitcher of the Year faced the league's worst offensive club on Saturday morning, but it turned into quite a battle.
Vanderbilt ace Greyson Garvin (12-1) pitched five fantastic innings before Arkansas got to him in the sixth and the No. 3 Commodores held on to edge and eliminate the No. 22 Razorbacks 3-2 in an SEC Tournament semifinal.
The Razorbacks (38-20), who got a sensational in relief effort from Colby Suggs - needed to beat Vandy (47-9) twice on Saturday to force their way into Sunday's championship game.
Instead they will travel home and expect to hear their name called on Sunday as one of 16 NCAA Regional hosts.
The rest of the field with then be announced during the NCAA Tournament selection show on Monday.
Vanderbilt made short work of Arkansas starter Cade Lynch, who only lasted into the second.
Lynch gave up Anthony Gomez' RBI double in the first and loaded the bases, but steadied himself with a inning-ending double play.
He left after Collin Harrell launched a two-run blast in the second – his seventh of the season and Vandy's seventh of the tournament – for a 3-0 lead.
That brought on Suggs, who did not allow a hit or a run in his nearly five innings of work while fanning three and walking a trio.
Garvin was masterful through the first five innings, needing just 48 pitches while shutting out the Razorbacks during that time.
But he needed 34 just to get through the sixth inning alone.
Arkansas got to him for three straight hits, albeit Tim Carver was gunned down trying to steal second.
Bo Bigham followed with a single and Collin Kuhn drilled a one-out triple off the left center field wall to cut the Razorback deficit to 3-1.
Dominic Ficociello's fielder's choice got Kuhn across the plate to cut it to 3-2, but Garvin survived runners at the corners when Matt Reynolds lined out to left field.
The Razorbacks did chase him the seventh when Jarrod McKinney and Tim Carver reached base and brought on reliever Will Clinard with one out.
Clinard fanned both Bigham and Kuhn – the only two batters he faced - to escape the jam.
Garvin allowed both runs on nine hits with three strikeouts and a walk.
Kevin Ziomak and Mark Lamm combined to pitch the eighth for the Commodores while closer Navery Moore handled the ninth for his 11th save.
Kuhn, Jerrod McKinney and Kyle Robinson all had two hits each for Arkansas.
MORE TO COME
Vanderbilt 3, Arkansas 2
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