Opening Day On Deck For Razorbacks
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – After waiting nearly seven months since the final out of the 2018 season, Arkansas Baseball will finally begin its 2019 season on Friday in a three-game series against Ohio Valley Conference-member Eastern Illinois. First pitch for Opening Day is set for 3 p.m. at Baum-Walker Stadium.
The Razorbacks enter the season off a national runner-up finish at the College World Series a year ago and are ranked in the top-25 in every national poll. Arkansas’ highest check in comes in the USA Today/ESPN Coaches’ Poll at No. 12. Three of the six polls have the Hogs in the top-15.
Arkansas has faced Eastern Illinois in 10 series since 1984, the last coming in 2016. The Razorbacks own the all-time series with the Panthers, 26-2, and all 28 games have been played in Fayetteville.
All three games will be available on SEC Network+ and the WatchESPN app with Brett Dolan (PXP) and Troy Eklund (Analyst) calling the action. Phil Elson (PXP) and former Razorback Bubba Carpenter (Analyst) will have the radio call on the IMG Sports Network. Fans can listen to the radio call via the Razorback Gameday app and locally on KQSM 92.1 FM. Pregame coverage begins 30 minutes prior to first pitch. There will also be a live radio link available on ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
Fri. | 3 p.m. | (ARK) RHP Isaiah Campbell (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. (EIU) RHP Tyler Jones (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
Sat. | 2 p.m. | (ARK) RHP Connor Noland (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. (EIU) RHP Michael YaSenka (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
Sun. | 1 p.m. | (ARK) RHP Jacob Kostyshock (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. (EIU) RHP Spenser Dexter (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
Oh Happy Opening Day
Arkansas has had nothing but success on Opening Day under head coach Dave Van Horn. Through his 16 seasons at the helm, Arkansas has never lost its first game of the season under Van Horn and have won all 16 games by an average of 6.0 runs.
‘Zay Day Now On Fridays
Redshirt junior right-hander Isaiah Campbell will get the call to be the Opening Day starting pitcher Friday against Eastern Illinois. This is the eighth time in the last nine years that a right-hander will be the Opening Day starter for the Hogs and 13th under head coach Dave Van Horn. Last year, Campbell made 17 starts, including four in the NCAA Tournament and two in the College World Series. He struck out 75 batters, which was third most on the team and earned the CWS semifinal victory over Florida with a career-high eight strikeouts over 5.1 innings.
Home Sweet Home
For the 11th-straight year dating back to 2008, Arkansas will be opening the season at Baum Stadium. The opener against Eastern Illinois will be the first of just a three-game stretch before the Hogs hit the road to Los Angeles to face USC. Of the first 20 games this season, 17 will be inside Baum Stadium. The Hogs have won at least 20 games at home every year since 2006.
Freshman right-hander Connor Noland will be no stranger to the spotlight on Saturday when he gets the starting nod. Noland played in four games at quarterback for the Razorback Football team in the fall, starting once against Tulsa and throwing for 255 yards with one touchdown. Noland was a two-sport star at Greenwood High School and won the 2018 state title at Baum Stadium last spring against Benton, striking out 12.
Following the three-game set with Eastern Illinois, Arkansas hits the road west where it will face the USC Trojans in a three-game series in Los Angeles. The series is set to begin on Thursday, Feb. 21 and run through Saturday, Feb. 23.
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