Austin Anderson got one hit on the night, but made it a big one, delivering the game-winner in the 11th inning as No. 18 Ole Miss (32-14) rallied for an 8-7 win over Saint Louis (30-14) on Wednesday night.
With two men on and no outs, Anderson delivered a single to left center to bring homeTanner Mathis and give the Rebels the walk-off win. It is the first time this season a team has rallied to beat Saint Louis when the Billikens held a lead heading into the eighth inning. Prior to tonight’s contest, Saint Louis was 25-0 when leading after seven innings of play.
Tanner Bailey (4-1) picked up the relief win as the ninth pitcher to see action for Ole Miss. Bailey entered the game to start the 11th and retired the side in order before the Rebels rallied in the bottom of the inning.
Josh Moore (0-1) took the loss for the Billikens, allowing the one unearned run on four hits with two strikeouts in 1.2 innings of work.
“It was an amazing game,” Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco said. “In the first inning, they put together an inning as good as any we’ve faced all year long. You have to credit Saint Louis. Every time they’ve been here, they’re very offensive. They’re scary to pitch to. I’m proud of the way (Scott) Weathersby came in and put a bunch of zeros up. He kept them at bay and gave us a shot. We got close and they extended it some more. We hung in there. Offensively it was a really good day for us. Stuart (Turner) was tremendous. He had four hits. I’m proud of the way the guys hung in there.”
Buried in the late inning excitement at Swayze Field was a clutch performance out of the bullpen by redshirt sophomoreScott Weathersby, who entered the game with two outs in the first and the Rebels trailing 4-0 off an RBI double from Mike Vigliarolo and a three-run home run from Grant Nelson.
Weathersby worked 4.1 innings in relief of starter Josh Laxer, allowing only two hits with a walk and two strikeouts.
Ole Miss responded with a pair of runs in the third inning. The Rebels took advantage of a fielding error in left off a single from Tanner Mathis to score the first run as Will Jamison came home from first and Mathis went to third on the single. A sac fly from Anderson brought Mathis home and cut the lead in half at 4-2.
The Rebels got a third run home in the sixth when Holt Perdzock delivered an RBI-groundout to short to bring homeStuart Turner from third and cut the lead to one at 4-3.
Saint Louis used a pair of bases-loaded singles from Danny Brennan and Mike Levine to bring home two runs as a throwing error on a ground ball to first allowed the Billikens to load the bases with one out. The two runs took the lead back out to three runs for Saint Louis, who lead 6-3 after the top of the eighth.
Ole Miss promptly responded in the bottom half of the eighth, plating two runs in the home half of the inning. A double from Turner and a single from Mistone put two men on before Perdzock delivered a sac fly to drive in the first run. Back-to-back singles from Sikes Orvis and Preston Overbey brought Mistone home, before the Billikens would throw out pinch-runner Lance Wilson at the plate trying to score when the throw to the plate from left went to the backstop.
The Rebels trailed by only one run after the eighth at 6-5, but the Billikens took the lead out to two runs in the top of the ninth.
A walk, a hit batter and a bunt single loaded the bases before a second walk in the inning would push a run home. The Rebels then got out of the inning with nice defense as a foul fly put the first out on the board and then a fly out to center field turned into a rare double play as Auston Bousfield threw home to Turner, who fired back to Jake Overbey at second after the runner got too far off the base on the fly ball.
The inning ended with Ole Miss trailing by two at 7-5 and looking for some late magic.
Will Jamison drew a lead-off walk to open the home half of the ninth before a one-out single from Bousfield and a walk of Anderson loaded the bases. Turner then came up with his fourth hit of the night, a two-RBI single up the middle to tie the game at seven. The Billikens would then get out of the inning with a play at home and a strikeout to send the game to extra frames.
Brett Huber kept the Billikens off the board in the 10th, retiring the side in order before Bailey came in to pitch in the 11th and pick up the win off the Rebel rally in the home half of the inning.
Ole Miss will return to action this weekend, traveling to face the Auburn Tigers in a three-game series at Plainsman Park. Friday’s series opener is set for a 6:00 p.m. first pitch.
— Ole Miss Sports Information