On Saturday, the Razorbacks' young arms showed they were clutch, too.
Barrett Astin worked around a pair of base runners in scoring position to record a pair of ninth inning outs and No. 4 Arkansas held on to beat Valparaiso 4-3 at Baum Stadium.
The Razorbacks, which trailed 3-0 after the first inning, overcame a deficit for the third time in their last four games to improve to 7-0 - the program's best start since 2006.
"We escaped," Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn said. "We haven't played very well this weekend. Valparaiso has played very good defense and they've pitched very well. We could easily be 0-2 against them.
"The good thing is you do gain experience. If we were out here whipping everybody then if we get behind, then we probably wouldn't know how to handle it. We've been behind a couple of times now. We've come back and our bullpen has held it, and we've chipped away and come back and won a couple of games this week. So i feel like we are gaining some experience."
Manning hit a hard grounder back at Astin, who looked off the runner at third before throwing to first base for the second out. Hagel then grounded out to Matt Reynolds at third base for the final out.
"I was just trying to make pitches down in the zone," said Astin, who recorded his first save of the year. "The wind was blowing out today and I didn't want to leave anything up so they would have a chance to hit anything out. I wanted to keep everything down and get some ground balls."
Arkansas' bullpen retired nine batters Saturday without allowing a run. Brandon Moore sat two batters in the top of the seventh inning before freshman left-hander Michael Gunn struck out Hagel looking at a 3-2 fastball on the inside of the plate, stranding a runner at second.
"They did a great job," Van Horn said. "Moore came in and I guess first pitch he gives up a hit; somebody is on first. Then after that he was lights out. He ended up striking out a hitter. Then we got to the left-hander and he goes 3-0 on the hitter, and comes back and strikes him out."
"We're deep this year and we know it," Astin said. "We're still trying to figure out roles. As the season progresses, we'll fill our roles and figure out where everybody is."
Valparaiso (2-3) scored three runs in the top of the first thanks to some sloppy play by the Razorbacks' defense. Arkansas committed two errors in the inning and starter Ryne Stanek had a wild pitch.
"I made some bad pitches and some good pitches, and things just didn't bounce our way," Stanek said. "I tried to keep going and fight through that inning. Once I got through that, it was a lot smoother the rest of the game."
Stanek, who allowed just one earned run in the frame, didn't allow a hit for the rest of his six innings on the mound. The sophomore struck out four batters and gave up seven hits.
Arkansas slowly chipped away at the lead in the process. Bo Bigham's RBI single in the third inning pulled the Razorbacks within 3-1 and Jacob Morris' fielder's choice RBI made it 3-2 in the fifth.
The Razorbacks scored two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning to take the lead. Matt Reynolds led off the inning with his fourth double of the season and scored on a Morris sacrifice fly to right field.
Matt Vinson, who walked to reach base, scored one batter later when Tim Carver hit a two-out single to left. Carver, who also had three of Arkansas' four errors Saturday, is batting .444 this season with at least one RBI in each of the last five games.
"Some days you're not going to have it and you have to clear your mind and just get ready for offense," said Carver, who has six errors through the first seven games. "That's really all I could do."
Bo Bigham singled to advance Carver to third in the next at-bat, chasing Valpo starter Kyle Wormington. Ben Mahar struck out Jacob Mahan to end the inning, stranding two runners.
"We were one swing away, one hit away from having a three-run lead," Van Horn said. "That was a little disappointing.
"We're playing just good enough to win, I guess. It's not going to be good enough when we get to leauge play."
The two teams will meet in the series finale Sunday at 1:05 p.m. Junior left-hander Randall Fant will get the start on the mound for Arkansas, while senior right-hander Kevin Wild will get the nod for the Crusaders.