Pitching was the big story — on both ends.
Mike Mayers, going on five days rest, threw 100 pitches over 6.1 innings and did not allow an earned run. The Wildcats’ only run in the game came on an apparent miscommunication between shortstop Austin Anderson and second baseman Christian Helsel on a two-out stolen base attempt. Stuart Turner’s throw was on target but ended up in center field, and Kentucky’s Zac Zellers scored from third.
Mayers scattered six hits, walked one and struck out four.
The Rebels’ bullpen, which twice blew one-run leads late in the games Kentucky won in Oxford, gave up two hits, one walk and no runs over the final 2.2 innings.
Soft-throwing lefty Jeremy Massie made some news. He relieved Mayers with one out in the seventh, runners first and second. The first batter he faced reached on a swinging bunt that Massie fielded on the grass on the third base side but had no play. With the bases loaded Massie got a pop-up and a ground ball to get out of the inning.
Massie said he was a little nervous going in. Not surprising really. His appearances have been very spread out, and his last one, against Mississippi State, wasn’t that good. However, his three innings over two appearances against Kentucky in late April were hitless and scoreless. That may have played into the decision to use Massie.
It’s also worth noting that Massie had no appearances between Kentucky Game 3 on April 27 and the first MSU game on May 11. Massie officially registered only 1-3 of an inning against MSU and in two appearances allowed four hits and three earned runs.
Ole Miss postgame reaction here:
Kentucky players talk here about Mike Mayers and about their inability to get the big hit.
Offense for Ole Miss was enough but nothing dynamic. The Rebels got nine hits against UK lefty Jerad Grundy but didn’t get him out of the game early. It was a 2-1 game and looking like the bullpen might have to protect another one-run lead until the Rebels pushed across two in the sixth. Anderson and Turner each had two hits. Preston Overbey, Helsel and Anderson had doubles.
The Rebels will take on No. 3 seed Arkansas tomorrow morning at 9:30. It’s double elimination now for Ole Miss.
We’re about 40 minutes out. Teams are warming up, Ole Miss in white on uniforms, Kentucky blue on gray.
RF Kyle Barrett L .352
LF Zac Zellers R .239
1B AJ Ree L .281
CF Austin Cousino L .251
2B J.T. Riddle L .284
3B Max Kuhn R .247
SS Matt Reida L .236
DH Paul McConkey L .237
C Micheal Thomas R .246
LHP Jerad Grundy 6-5, 4.75
LF Mathis .272
SS Anderson .296
C Turner .377
3B Mistone .320
CF Bousfield .271
RF Overbey .283
1B Orvis .244
DH Allen .236
2B Helsel .206
RHP Mike Mayers 4-5, 3.21