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Kentucky, Arkansas Each Hit 3 Homers But Wildcats Top Scoreboard 9-6

By Doug Kyle

In Game 9 of the 2024 Southeastern Conference Baseball Tournament, Kentucky and Arkansas both followed this week's trend of home runs by smashing three each, the six total tying an SECT record last set by Alabama and Florida in 1997. That was also the same year the tournament record of 38 was set, which is also in jeopardy this week with the current 27. (The location was Columbus, GA, sometimes regarded as not one of the historically favorite tournament sites)

But in the end, Kentucky's nine runs overall trumped Arkansas' six, as the Wildcats moved on through the losers bracket, and the Razorbacks took an early exit home to what will most certainly be a regional host and Top 8 seed.

For that matter, Kentucky, the SEC co-champion, could likely do the same "'cue and two" scenario as well and land as a Top 8 host too. That's a question posed last night after the top four seeds at Hoover, slotted straight into the double elimination round while seeds 5-12 fought it out for the other four slots, all lost their opening games.

Starting pitcher selections, which despite the Thursday-Saturday schedule the last series of the regular season, are always dicey, might or might not reflect how serious a particular head coach is about going deep or winning the tournament.

Those with enviable positions such as Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Texas A&M can afford to be conservative and plan for regionals, while others, starting even with #5 seed Mississippi State, have varying degrees of work to do and progress to make this week to improve their perceived standing for either hosting or getting their name called during the Selection Show on Memorial Day.

Tennessee advances to Game 13, set for 3: 00 pm Friday, against the loser of LSU-South Carolina later today.


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