Michael Roth pitched 8 2/3 scoreless innings as Arkansas blanked Corpus Christi 4-0 Thursday night at Whataburger Field before 4,702.
Roth (4-3) fell just short of completing his first game as a professional. He retired Joe Sclafani and Jonathan Meyer on ground balls to shortstop Maikol Gonzalez to open the ninth, but was lifted in the wake of Preston Tucker's single to center and a Jio Mier double in the left-center field gap.
Michael Brady then earned his first save by catching Andrew Aplin on a called third strike.
Roth, who pitched the University of South Carolina to consecutive national championships as a collegian in 2010-11, allowed five hits and two walks over a 112-pitch performance (70 strikes). He struck out four.
Miscommunication cost Corpus Christi (27-26) the night's first run. Gonzalez drew a lead-off walk and an out later, with Alex Yarbrough at bat, pilfered second base. Hooks catcher Tyler Heineman threw to the uncovered keystone. Gonzalez raced to third and scored on Yarbrough's ground out.
Two-out trouble found Hooks starter David Rollins in the third. He walked Gonzalez a second time before yielding Kaleb Cowart's triple to left-center field.
Though Rollins (0-1) pitched out of one-out, two-runner trouble the next inning, he was gone after four frames, two hits, two walks and three strikeouts. His pitch count reached 70 (45 strikes).
Rollins' successor, Alex Sogard, worked three scoreless innings while striking out three against two hits and a walk. The Travelers (26-26) found quick success vs. his replacement, Michael Dimock. Arkansas added a third run, Gonzalez and Yarbrough again the dynamic duo with singles an out apart. Jimmy Swift's base hit into right field plated Yarbrough and accounted for the final margin.
The Hooks change opponents Friday as the Northwest Arkansas Naturals come to town. First pitch is 7:10.
--Corpus Christi Hooks