By Brad Locke/NEMS Daily Journal
FINAL: Ole Miss 10, No. 21 MSU 8 (Game 2)
OXFORD | Recapping No. 21 MSU’s 10-8 loss to Ole Miss in Game 2 of a doubleheader at Swayze Field on Saturday.
• The buzz: MSU (36-15, 13-13 SEC) suffered a big blow today by dropping two games to the Rebels (35-16, 14-12). The Bulldogs fell behind their rival in the standings, and now there is concern that this could cost them an NCAA regional hosting bid. After being shut out in Game 1, State started fast offensively in the nightcap with two runs in the first. Then it had to play catchup.
• Big inning: Ole Miss scored four times in the first, with Bousfield’s bases-loaded triple giving his team a 3-2 lead. Holt Perdzock drove in a run with a sac fly.
• Key stats: MSU stranded 11 runners, Ole Miss eight. … MSU committed two errors – on the same play – leading to one unearned run.
• MSU at the plate: The Bulldogs had 17 hits. … Alex Detz had four hits and an RBI. … Hunter Renfroe and Wes Rea had three hits apiece, and Rea drove in three runs. … State brought the go-ahead run to the plate in the ninth, but Adam Frazier‘s dying line drive to center field was caught by a diving Auston Bousfield.
• Ole Miss at the plate: Bousfield had a huge game, collecting three of Ole Miss’ 11 hits and recording a career-high five RBIs. He had a three-run triple in the first inning and a two-run double in the fifth. … Andrew Mistone, Austin Anderson and Will Jamison had two hits each.
• MSU on the mound: Starter Kendall Graveman (5-5) had a rough start, allowing four runs in the first inning. He lasted 4 1/3 innings, allowing six runs (all earned) on seven hits, striking out one with three walks. … MSU used five relievers, including Evan Mitchell, who made his first SEC appearance since March 23. He walked the lone batter he faced.
• Ole Miss on the mound: Starter Sam Smith went six innings, allowing three runs (all earned) on nine hits with two Ks and no walks. … Three relievers saw action, with Tanner Bailey working the final 2 2/3 innings for his third save. He gave up three runs (all earned) on five hits with two strikeouts and two walks.
• Quotable: ”Two totally different baseball games from different sides of the spectrum. The first game just a pitching, defensive battle, scratch it out. The second game was a slugfest.” – Ole Miss Mike Bianco
• Bottom line: MSU now has to deal with Ole Miss ace Bobby Wahl tomorrow. Wahl (9-0, 1.20 ERA) pitched the first inning Friday before rains postponed the game, and so he’ll have no restrictions from Bianco tomorrow. MSU is sending lefty Jacob Lindgren (4-2, 3.44) to the mound.
FINAL: Ole Miss 3, No. 21 MSU 0 (Game 1)
Recapping No. 21 MSU’s 3-0 loss to Ole Miss in Game 1 of a doubleheader at Swayze Field on Saturday. .
• The buzz: With Friday’s game suspended by rain in the first inning, the teams are playing two today. The Rebels got it done behind some very strong pitching, although State (36-14, 13-12 SEC) certainly had some opportunities, like when Hunter Renfroe hit into an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded in the third. MSU had the tying run at the plate in the ninth, but pinch-hitter Mitch Slauter struck out looking on a 3-2 pitch that he thought was too low. He and coach John Cohen both had words for the umpire as Kool & the Gang’s “Celebration” fired up over the loudspeakers.
• Big inning: Ole Miss (34-16, 13-12) got all the offense it would need in the fifth inning when Will Allen hit a Luis Pollorena pitch that bounced off the top of the left-center field wall and over for a two-out solo home run.
• Key stats: MSU, which leads the SEC in double plays turned, had none. … MSU stranded seven runners, Ole Miss eight.
• MSU at the plate: The Bulldogs had just two hits – one by Adam Frazier, one by Renfroe. … Alex Detz was 0 of 3 with three strikeouts. … MSU struck out 10 times total.
• Ole Miss at the plate: The Rebels had eight hits. … Andrew Mistone had two hits, as did Allen. … Sikes Orvis and Austin Knight had an RBI each.
• MSU on the mound: Pollorena (6-3) was better than he’s been in about a month, tossing 5 2/3 innings, allowing two runs (both earned) on five hits. He struck out three and walked none, showing good command of his changeup. … Ross Mitchell tossed two-third of an inning, giving up one hit and walking two. … Chad Girodo allowed one run on two hits in 1 1/3 innings, with a walk and two strikeouts. … Will Cox faced one batter and struck him out, entering the game with an 0-2 count on the hitter.
• Ole Miss on the mound: After normal Friday starter Bobby Wahl was scratched due to the rainout – he pitched one shutout inning Friday and will start Sunday – regular Saturday starter Mike Mayers took the hill and was superb. Mayers (4-4) tossed seen shutout innings, allowing two hits with five strikeouts and two walks. … Brett Huber worked a scoreless ninth for his 11th save.
• Bottom line: For the moment, MSU and Ole Miss are tied in the SEC standings, but Game 2 is coming up here shortly. Senior right-hander Kendall Graveman (5-4, 2.47 ERA) will throw for State, while Ole Miss will send sophomore Sam Smith (2-0, 3.35) to the hill.