BATON ROUGE, La. – The Rebel bats didn’t strike often on Friday night, but when they did it was with power as No. 11 Ole Miss (16-6, 5-3 SEC) used four home runs – including a pair from freshman Matt Snyder – to power past No. 2 LSU by a score of 7-4 at Alex Box Stadium.
Snyder paced the Rebels at the plate with a 2-for-4 night with four RBI and two runs scored as he belted out a solo home run to put the Rebels on the board in the second and then belted out a three-run home run in the sixth to extend the Rebel lead. Snyder has now hit at least one home run in three-straight games.
Matt Smith and Jeremy Travis also notched home runs on the night in the Rebel win.
Drew Pomeranz (2-0) picked up the win as he worked 7.0 innings and allowed only three runs on six hits with three walks and five strikeouts.
Anthony Ranaudo (2-2) suffered the loss for the Tigers as he worked 6.2 innings and allowed six runs on six hits with four walks and nine strikeouts.
“I thought Drew really battled tonight and bounced back a couple of times in key moments where things could have gotten out of hand,” said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. “It was nice to see us connect well at the plate and see what Matt Snyder is capable of doing. He really had a tremendous night for a freshman in a tough environment.”
LSU scored in the first when Jared Mitchell crossed the plate from third on a bloop single to right field from Sean Ochinko that fell in behind the outstretched glove of Tim Ferguson. Mitchell doubled off the wall in straight-away center field to reach base and moved to third when the Rebels threw home to get out lead-off hitter D.J. LeMahieu. LeMahieu, who had reached on a single to open the inning, held up at third on the play and didn’t try to advance home until Mitchell was standing on the bag with him, allowing the Rebels to record the out.
Matt Snyder tied the game with one swing in the top of the second as the freshman hit his third home run in as many games with a solo shot to left center to knot things at one.
Ole Miss took its first lead of the game in the fifth when Matt Smith took the second pitch he saw over the fence in left center to give Ole Miss a 2-1 advantage.
Snyder again came up big for the Rebels in the sixth inning, crushing his second home run of the game over the fence in right field. The three-run shot scored Henry and Power, who both walked, and gave the Rebels a 5-1 lead.
The Rebels added a sixth run in the seventh when Tim Ferguson doubled off the wall to score Basham. The catcher singled before moving to second on a sac bunt from Henry and then scoring on the Ferguson hit to give Ole Miss a 6-1 edge.
LSU rallied in the seventh as Leon Landry came up with a two-RBI double to right field to trim the lead to 6-3. The Tigers put two men on with two outs, but Pomeranz came up big and came up with a strikeout of Mitchell on a full count to end the seventh.
The Rebels pushed back out by four with a solo home run from Jeremy Travis in the seventh inning that put the score at 7-3 in favor of Ole Miss.
The home team rallied again in the bottom of the eighth when Ochinko scored from second on a single through the right side from Blake Dean. Ochinko reached on a throwing error from third to open the inning, moving to second on the error as the ball rolled to the fence.
The Rebels would close things out from there as Jake Morgan continued to perform well on the mound, striking out six batters over the final two frames to seal the win. Morgan has now struck recorded 12 straight outs via strikeout dating back to the final two innings of the Alabama game last Saturday when he recorded the save.
Ole Miss and LSU will return to the field for the second game of the series at 3 p.m. on Saturday in a contest that will be televised by Fox Sports Net.