We knew Mike Bianco's squad would come out fired up to secure a spot in the NCAA Tournament on Tuesday night, but damn, did they have to go and beat Arkansas State so badly that they threw in the towel?
No, like Arkansas State literally had enough. With the score sitting at 17-3 after seven innings, the two coaching staffs mutually agreed to call the game.
I'll be honest, I didn't even know that was possible.
In fairness, the Rebs had a lot more to play for. With the W, they guaranteed that they can finish no worse than one game above .500 after the SEC Tournament, essentially ensuring an at-large bid to the Big Dance. Arkansas State, meanwhile, is fighting for a berth in their conference tournament and needed to save pitchers for a weekend series.
So they trotted out the sacrificial duo of Collin Nord and Bo Ritter, God bless them. Sikes Orvis had no mercy, blasting his first career grand slam in the first inning, then coming back in the second to slap a three-run shot, part of an eight-RBI night. Five Rebels had multi-hit games as the team piled up 15 total hits.
There had been rumors coming into the game that Bianco was willing to use Christian Trent or one of the other weekend bros if it came to it, but obviously there was no need. Mitchel Babb, Will Stokes and Evan Anderson combined to allow two runs on seven hits.