Van Horn Hot After Loss

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn was spitting venom and for good reason after Saturday's 11-6 loss against Tennessee.

It was the most runs and hits (19) allowed by the No. 13 Razorbacks (22-6, 3-5 in Southeastern Conference play) and the most hits No. 21 Tennessee (18-9, 2-5) has had this season. Despite hitting a season-high four homers, it still was the Hogs' largest margin of defeat.

Clearly frustrated and more furious than he has been all season, Van Horn had a heated post-game meeting with his team that lasted longer than usual.

"I don't like getting my butt kicked is what I told them and we got our butt kicked," Van Horn said. "Their guy pitched good and they pounded us all over the field ... Be ready to play (today)."

Only about half of the season-high crowd of 8,431 in Baum Stadium stuck around for the game's entirety. Less than 24 hours after scoring one run in Friday's loss, the Volunteers' offense took care of business early by scoring in four of their first five at-bats to have the outcome pretty much in hand by the end of the fifth inning.

All nine Tennessee starters had at least one hit led by Julio Borbon's and Tony Delmonico's 4-for-6 efforts.

The series rubber match is scheduled for 12:35 p.m. today.

"Up and down the lineup, we played well. We needed that," said Tennessee coach Rod Delmonico. "Hopefully, we can build on this and come out and play like this (today). We need to take the series, just like they do."

The Vols took control when Borbon hit a two-run single to increase the lead to 9-4 in the fifth. The ball took a high hop off the field's surface to skip by Hogs first baseman Danny Hamblin and into right field.

"It was a tough play in between hops," Van Horn said. "I'm not going to say it should have been made. The thing was, the pitch was a hanging curveball, waist high and he basically could have hit it anywhere he wanted to."

Van Horn's frustrations centered around pitching. Starter Charley Boyce (2-1) lasted just 1 1/3 innings and was charged with five earned runs on six hits. Relievers didn't fare much better as James Gilbert and Shaun Seibert allowed two runs each over the next three innings.

Gilbert and Seibert entered the game with ERA's below 2.00, with most of their innings coming in mid-week games.

"We're not going to pitch good every day," Van Horn said. "Our bullpen was pitiful (Saturday). It was terrible. Just give us a chance to stick around a little bit, but it just seemed like bang, bang, bang. Up in the zone.

"It's like I told them. Tuesday all-stars. How about some weekend warriors? That's what we're looking for around here."

While Arkansas' pitchers struggled, Tennessee's Craig Cobb overcame a sluggish start to complete his first game this season. He threw 114 pitches, including 85 for strikes, while striking out four and walking one. He allowed six earned runs on nine hits.

"It was like boom, boom, boom and then he shut them down for five innings in a row," Delmonico said. "He's capable of doing that. He's going to keep it close, but they probably hit him better than anybody the last couple of years.

"He got some balls up and when he did, they jumped all over it."

Tennessee jumped out to a quick lead in the first inning when Kelly Edmundson slapped a two-run double down the left-field line. Arkansas answered in the bottom of the inning when Craig Gentry led off with a solo homer and Jake Dugger sliced a two-run homer over the left-field wall to give Arkansas a short-lived 3-2 lead.

In the second, the Vols tied the score on Tony Delmonico's bases-loaded single that sent Boyce to the dugout early. Gilbert entered in relief and allowed two more runs before getting out of the inning by striking out Brian Van Kirk looking.

Arkansas trimmed it to 5-4 when Gentry drove in Blake Parker, who reached on a one-out single in the bottom of the second. But that was as close as it would get as Tennessee tacked on two more runs in the third, highlighted by Jarred Frazier's two-run homer, and two more runs in the fifth off Seibert, who relieved Gilbert after Frazier's homer.

Brian McLelland finally slowed down Tennessee's offense after coming on in relief in the fifth inning. He pitched three shutout innings before giving up two runs in the ninth.

Arkansas did show some life late despite facing a huge deficit. David Hum clubbed a solo homer in the eighth and Blake Parker hit a solo shot in the ninth to create the final margin.

But it did little to calm Van Horn's demeanor afterwards.

"We were right in that game early," Van Horn said. "We hit (Cobb) for a while, but every time he went over there and sat down, they punched in a couple more for him. Then he got on a roll.

"We had our chances early, but we didn't take care of some things."

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