The Ole Miss baseball team suffered a doubleheader setback at the hands of the UAB Blazers Tuesday afternoon, March 24. UAB (14-9) held the Rebels (13-12) to one run in each seven-inning game, claiming the first contest, 6-1, before taking the finale, 3-1.
Over 3,000 local elementary students were in attendance for the afternoon doubleheader as the Rebels hosted School Day at Swayze.
Ole Miss will gear up for conference play, traveling to Arkansas for a three-game series beginning Thursday night, March 26. The opener between the Rebels and Razorbacks will be nationally televised on ESPNU with first pitch set for 6:30 p.m. CT. SEC Network will broadcast Friday’s 6:00 p.m. CT contest before the series wraps up with a 2:00 p.m. CT game on Saturday afternoon, March 28.
Game 1: UAB 6, Ole Miss 1
The Rebels out-hit the Blazers, 8-6, but UAB scored in four of the seven innings to take game one, 6-1.
Sophomore shortstop Errol Robinson went 2-for-2 with a double as well as scoring the only Ole Miss run. Six other Rebels in the lineup recorded hits, including designated hitter Colby Bortles, whose RBI single to center field scored Robinson.
Senior Sam Smith (1-4) suffered the loss, allowing four runs on three hits through three innings of play. Jacob Waguespack also pitched three frames as the Blazers tallied two unearned runs off the right-hander. Finishing out the contest on the mound for Ole Miss, junior southpaw Matt Denny pitched a scoreless inning.
Tyler Mims led the Blazers at the plate, going 2-for-3 with three runs and two RBI, including a solo home run in the fourth. Center fielder Chase Davis added a pair of hits as well.
On the rubber, Sam Kelley (1-1) gave up the only run allowed by UAB, but he picked up the win through three innings of relief. Thomas Lowery (1) kept the Rebels off the scoreboard in the final 3.1 innings to earn his first save of the year.
UAB scored the first four runs of the game, tallying runs in three-straight innings. The Blazers plated two in the second, while adding another run in the third. Leading off the top of the fourth, Mims hit a home run into the Ole Miss bullpen to give UAB a 4-0 lead.
The Rebels got on the board in the bottom of the fourth with a pair of two out hits. Robinson doubled to left before coming around to score on a base hit to center by Bortles.
After UAB tacked on two more runs in the sixth, the Rebels tried to build some late-inning magic in their final plate appearances. Robinson and Dishon singled in the final frame, but the Blazers held on for the five-run decision.
Game 2: UAB 3, Ole Miss 1
Coming out for the second seven-inning contest, UAB plated two runs in the first and limited Ole Miss to three hits in a 3-1 win.
Sophomore catcher Henri Lartigue recorded two of the Rebels’ hits and reached base all three times he stepped to the plate. Lartigue knocked in the solo Ole Miss run, while reigning SEC Freshman of the Week Will Golsan finished his day with hits in both contests.
Regular midweek starter Evan Anderson (1-3) surrendered three runs on six hits and three walks over 3.2 innings. The bullpen duo of lefties Mitchel Babb and Wyatt Short completed the ballgame. Babb pitched two scoreless innings, while Short got the final four outs with the Rebels in the field.
Three Blazers recorded two hits apiece, while Gavin Niquette (1-1) earned his first win of the season by coming out of the bullpen for 2.1 innings. UAB closer Adam Lau (3) pitched the last two frames, getting out of jams in both innings to save the game.
UAB scored a pair of runs in the opening inning after the first two batters reached base via a single and a walk. Back-to-back RBI base hits, later in the inning with two outs, put the Blazers ahead, 2-0, early.
Ole Miss countered with a run in the bottom of the second as Sikes Orvis was plunked by a pitch to start the inning, and Bortles walked to get two Rebels on base with zero outs. Following a sacrifice bunt by Robinson, Lartigue hit a sharp groundball to third for a single that brought Orvis across home plate.
The Rebels threatened in the third as Golsan roped a leadoff double down the left field line. Later on, Orvis was intentionally walked, and pinch-hitter Joe Wainhouse nearly gave Ole Miss the lead on a fly to deep center field. However, the freshman just got underneath the pitch as the ball was hauled in at the edge of the warning track.
With the Rebels still trailing by two going into the bottom of the seventh, Lartigue smacked a base hit to left field to bring the tying run to the plate. Once again, UAB was able to get out of the inning unharmed with a double play to end the game.