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No. 13 Ole Miss Powers Past Ball State, 7-3

In its first game away from the friendly confines of Swayze Field, the No. 13 Ole Miss baseball team cruised to a 7-3 victory over Ball State University Friday afternoon at Springs Brooks Stadium. The Rebels (8-1) used a pair of three-run innings to win the first game of the 2016 Chanticleer Classic, hosted by Coastal Carolina University.

Ole Miss scored seven runs on nine hits. Switch hitter Henri Lartigue went 3-for-3 from the right side of the plate and reaching base all four times he stepped up to the plate. Cameron Dishon and Colby Bortles each homered for the first time this season, belting bombs in the third inning. Bortles led the Rebels with three RBI on his two hits. Sophomore Will Golsan added a multi-hit day, going 2-for-4.

“It was our best offensive day in a while,” said head coach Mike Bianco. “I was proud of our guys. I thought we were very business-like. With a long trip here, two flights – going to practice and lifting, dealing with the time change and early morning – I thought our guys responded well. “

The 16th-year Rebel head coach was especially pleased to see Lartigue’s success at the plate.

“He played so well in the spring and fall,” noted Bianco of his catcher. “You can say all you want about quality at-bats, but he needed some hits to feel good.”

On the mound, Brady Bramlett (3-0) earned his third win in as many starts. The redshirt junior went 6.0 innings, allowing two runs on four hits and striking out five. Freshman Dallas Woolfolk (1) pitched the remainder of the game to earn the rare three-inning save.

Alex Maloney and Sean Kenney combined to record four of the six hits for the Cardinals (3-6). Kevin Marnon (1-2) went 4.1 innings, and the Rebels pegged the southpaw for seven runs (five earned).

The Rebels struck first, taking advantage of a Ball State error in the second. Lartigue lined a one-out single that went through the legs of the BSU center fielder. The ball rolled all the way to the wall, and the Ole Miss catcher turned on the jets to slide safely into third. With a runner 90 away, Ryan Olenek did his job with a sacrifice fly to right field, scoring Lartigue and giving Ole Miss the early 1-0 lead.

Ball State immediately answered with a pair of runs in the third to flip the script. The Cardinals used a single, walk and sac bunt to put two runners in scoring position. Maloney brought both Cardinals in with a double to left to make it 2-1 in favor of Ball State. However, the BSU lead didn’t last long. In the bottom half of the inning, Ole Miss decided to play long ball. First, Dishon led things off with a solo homer to left-center field, knotting the contest at two runs apiece. Four batters later with a runner on, Bortles decided to join in on the fun with a blast of his own. The two-run home run put the Rebels back on top, 4-2, after three innings of play.

As Bramlett kept BSU off the scoreboard, Ole Miss added three more runs in the bottom of the fifth. With a runner on second, J.B. Woodman and Bortles both plated the Rebel in scoring position with RBI singles. An error later kept the inning alive, and Connor Cloyd drew a bases-loaded walk to make in 7-2 in favor of the Red and Blue.

Bramlett retired nine of the final 10 batters he faced, and Woolfolk entered the game in the seventh. Ball State scored a run in the ninth, but the flame-throwing freshman finished the job to collect the first save of his career.

Up next, the Rebels will play the host of the Chanticleer Classic, Coastal Carolina. First pitch is set for 2 p.m. CT tomorrow afternoon as Sean Johnson takes the hill for Ole Miss. Fans can listen to all of the action on the Ole Miss IMG Sports Network as Eli Savoie and Keith Kessinger will have the call.

Courtesy of Ole Miss Sports

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Adam Brown
Adam Brown
Sports Editor

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