Arkansas had several chances early, but couldn’t clinch its series at Missouri.
Instead, the Tigers (21-2) exploded for six runs in the sixth inning on their way to a 7-2 win over the Razorbacks (19-5) on a rainy Saturday afternoon at Taylor Stadium.
That offensive outburst was sparked by back-to-back home runs off Arkansas starter Trevor Stephan, who had settled into a rhythm after allowing the first two batters of the game to reach.
Missouri pushed a run across the plate with a double steal in the first inning, but didn’t really threaten to score in its next four trips.
A leadoff double by Nelson Mompierre in the fifth inning gave the Tigers a chance to break a 1-1 tie. Stephan responded with three consecutive strikeouts, though.
The Tigers’ leadoff man reached again in the sixth and this time, Robbie Glendinning followed with a two-run home run. Brian Sharp homered two pitches later to make it 4-1.
The other three runs were charged to Arkansas left-hander Kacey Murphy – who relieved Stephan with one out – and came on a two-run homer by Mompierre and RBI single by Kameron Misner.
It was the first time this season that Arkansas allowed three home runs in the same game and all three were hit in the sixth.
Stephan finished the game with 10 strikeouts in 5 1/3 innings, his second double-digit strikeout outing of the season. He also gave up four earned runs on six hits and one walk, earning his first loss with the Razorbacks.
Despite having runners in scoring position in the first, third and fourth innings, Arkansas managed only one run in the first seven innings and that came on a solo home run by Chad Spanberger in the third.
As a team, the Razorbacks hit just 1 for 9 in those situations and stranded eight total runners on base.
That lone hit was an RBI double by Carson Shaddy in the eighth inning, after Missouri had built a six-run lead.
The rubber match of the series is scheduled for 1 p.m. Sunday. It will be streamed on SEC Network+, meaning it can be watched online on ESPN3.com or the WatchESPN app.