COLUMBIA, Mo. – The eighth-ranked Georgia Bulldogs softball team fell to #18 Arkansas, 8-3, in the second round of the SEC Tournament Thursday afternoon at the Mizzou Softball Stadium.
Georgia will await Sunday’s NCAA Selection Show at 10 p.m., EDT, on ESPN2 to find out their Regional opponents and location set for next weekend, May 18-20.
Offensively, the Bulldogs outhit the Razorbacks 10-9. For the second game in a row, Ciara Bryan recorded three hits, tying a career-best by the sophomore. Kendall Burton had two hits in the contest.
Mary Wilson Avant (9-3) worked three innings in her start for Georgia. She allowed four runs on four hits. Lauren Mathis pitched two and a third innings in relief while Kylie Bass worked the remaining inning and two-thirds in the circle.
The Razorbacks jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the top of the third. An RBI double by Katie Warrick followed by a three-run shot over the right-center fence by A.J. Belans put Arkansas ahead by four.
Georgia responded in the bottom of the inning by manufacturing a run. Cortni Emanuel led off with an infield single, stole second, and advanced to third on a groundout. Justice Milz grounded out to second, plating Emanuel and putting Georgia on the board, 4-1.
The Dawgs cut the Razorback lead in half with a single run. With two on and two out, Burton lined a base hit into center, plating Jordan Doggett and putting the Bulldogs within two of the lead, 4-2.
Arkansas put up a three-spot in the top of the sixth to lengthen the lead to five, 7-2.
Burton led off the bottom of the sixth with a double to the wall in right center. She advanced to third on a groundout and scored on Bryan’s third hit of the game, 7-3.
The Razorbacks tacked on another run in the top of the seventh to bring the lead back to five, 8-3.
Georgia is now 1-1 against Arkansas in two all-time meetings in the SEC Tournament.
Head Coach Lu Harris-Champer
On the team’s performance Thursday…
“You have to give credit to Ciara Bryan and Kendall Burton, they were both outstanding at the plate today. I thought they had a really good mindset of just going up there and doing what they do every day.”
On facing Arkansas’ pitching…
“I thought Arkansas did a really nice job. … We were able to get hits on the board, we just didn’t put enough together to get enough done.”
On what the team can take from the tournament heading to the postseason…
“Most importantly, the mindset of getting out there and playing free and getting out there and doing what you know you can do and not letting the outcome of results get in the way of what you’re doing.”