Tuesday, March 28, 2023

No. 13 Ole Miss Hosts UT Martin in Final Regular Season Game at Swayze

By Adam Brown
Sports Editor

No. 13 Ole Miss baseball returns to the diamond this evening as they host the UT Martin Skyhawks in the final regular-season home game at Swayze. The first pitch is set for 6:30 p.m.

Ole Miss (36-15, 15-11 SEC) is coming off of a weekend series win over the No. 2 Vanderbilt Commodores. The Rebels took the first game 3-1 on Friday over the Commodores. Vanderbilt used one of their ace pitchers, Kumar Rocker. The Rebels, Doug Nikhazy, out pitched him.

On Sunday, Ole Miss used a 10-run third inning to overcome a 2-0 deficit to Vanderbilt. The Rebels won the series with a 13-10 victory.

Ole Miss’s offense is 19th in the nation and leads the SEC in batting average at .302, including a league-best .297 in conference play. Seven Rebels are hitting over .300 on the season.  As a team, Ole Miss has reached double-figure hits 29 times in 51 games. For a total of 527 hits on the season, which leads the SEC and is second in the nation.

UT Martin (17-27, 9-15 OVC) is rolling into Oxford after taking the series from Tennessee Tech over the weekend. The Skyhawks won the first two games and lost the second game of the doubleheader 15-9.

UT Martin is led at the plate by junior Blake Daniels with a .296 batting average. While his teammates, Will Lafollette (12)  and Ethan Whitley (10) have double-digit home runs on the season.

As a club, the Skyhawks have a .249 batting average with a total of 52 home runs.

UT Martin will call on the arm of left-hander Boston Smith to face the Rebels lineup. Coach Mike Bianco will send right-hander Josh Mallitz to the mound. Mallitz is 4-1 on the season with a 6.66 ERA with 34 strikeouts and eight walks in 25.2 innings pitching.

This game will be the 20th meeting on the diamond between these two programs. Ole Miss holds an 18-1 advantage in the all-time series.

Follow live updates on the game at @HottyToddySprts on Twitter.