It was another eventful week in the Southeastern Conference as teams like LSU, UF, and South Carolina continue the fight to prove that they are deserving of a spot in Omaha. But, as we come to the middle of the season, Kentucky, Auburn, and Arkansas are demonstrating that it’s still anyone’s ballgame.
The LSU Tigers went into this weekend against Arkansas expecting a battle, but what they received Friday night from the Razorbacks was unexpected. The Hogs came out of the gates hot and blew the Tigers completely out of the water with a 9-3 victory. The celebration would be short-lived however, as the Bayou Bengals would go on to win the rest of the weekend’s series with a 10-8 win on Saturday and a 2-0 shutout on Sunday. LSU will get a minute to rest during the week before taking on UL Lafayette in what should be a warmup for what will be a busy weekend against Ole Miss.
Just a little farther southeast of Baton Rouge, the Florida Gators are scrambling after losing two games this weekend to the Tennessee Volunteers. In a matchup that should’ve favored the Gators, they managed to lose Friday and Saturday’s games by one run before finally picking up a one-run victory of their own on Sunday. Although UF’s losses weren’t devastating, the team will be in a hurry to pick up a few wins before facing the 11th-ranked South Carolina Gamecocks in a couple of weeks. But, this will not be an easy task for UF as they have Florida State and Vanderbilt standing in their way.
The aforementioned Gamecocks are another team that needs to do some sorting in the next couple of weeks. They come out of this weekends’ series against Vanderbilt with a 1-2 record. Although the Commodores have proven themselves to be a strong baseball team this season, the Gamecocks should’ve delivered a bigger punch that what was witnessed. After being put away in the first two games of the series, the Gamecocks delivered a powerful blow, beating their adversaries 6-1 on Saturday to close out the series. South Carolina will need to be ready to make changes on the fly as they have seven games against ranked opponents in the next two weeks, particularly UNC and UF.
The other Top 25 teams to fall this weekend were the Kentucky Wildcats and the Auburn Tigers, who both only managed to win one game each. The Wildcats were convincingly defeated by the Mississippi State Bulldogs in the final two games of the weekend, while Texas A&M gave the Tigers two losses as a welcome to College Station.
At this point in the season, it is difficult to say whether any of the teams in the SEC will see the College World Series, but in a sport that has ever-changing rankings, it will be exciting to witness whether powerful teams like LSU and UF will finish strong, or make way for teams like South Carolina and Auburn to take their place. Either way, it should be an exciting finish for college baseball fans everywhere.