REBEL PITCHING COMES UP WITH SECOND GEM AGAINST USM
By Chris Burrows
OXFORD For an Ole Miss pitching staff with an ERA of 5.47, this week’s visit by Southern Mississippi was just what the doctor ordered.
Dan DeYoung and Matthew Duff combined to handcuff the Golden Eagles on four hits for eight innings en route to a 7-3 win before 1,003 Wednesday night in Oxford-University Stadium.
The night before, Pontotoc’s Jason Easterling got the 3-2 complete-game decision for the Rebels over USM, limiting the Golden Eagles to seven hits.
“Our pitching has progressed each time out,” Ole Miss head coach Don Kessinger said. “DeYoung was really good tonight. We didn’t walk anybody and we played good defense.
“The really encouraging thing was we put together a couple of hits in key situations. We’ve really struggled offensively and it’s great to see us get it done there.”
Ole Miss improved to 16-17, with SEC Western Division co-leader LSU visiting Friday at 7 p.m. in the opener of a three-game series. Southern Miss fell to 19-15.
The Rebels, who managed seven hits, manufactured a pair of seventh-inning runs to snap a 1-1 tie. Marc MacMillan struck out, but advanced to first base on a wild pitch.
A passed ball moved MacMillan to second base before Anthony Felston’s bunt moved him to third base. Felston alertly advanced to second base on the play when USM failed to cover the bag.
MacMillan scored on a wild pitch and one batter later, Keith Lewis ripped an RBI single that settled the issue.
The clubs swapped early runs, with USM scoring on a Jeremy Albritton single and Ole Miss scoring on a Jason Huisman triple.
The Rebels tacked on four insurance runs in the eighth inning, taking advantage of three walks and RBI hits from Felston and Todd Mensik. USM got a two-run single from Jeremy Albritton with two outs in the final inning to complete the scoring.
“We’ve played well against the toughest non-conference schedule we’ve ever had,” said Kessinger, whose club has won nine straight non-SEC games. “Winning two against a quality club like Southern Mississippi can’t be anything but a positive thing for us.”
OLE MISS 7, SOUTHERN MISS 3
Southern Miss 000 000 102 3 7 0
Ole Miss 000 010 24x 7 7 1
WP – Matthew Duff (4-3). LP – Heath Cantrell (2-2). Multiple hits – (OM) Keith Lewis 2, Todd Mensik 2. (USM) Jeremy Albritton 2. 2B – (OM) Todd Mensik. (USM) Cliff Wren 2. 3B – (OM) Jason Huisman. Records: Ole Miss 16-17. Southern Mississippi 19-15. Attendance: 1,003. Time:2:37.
Notes: Ole Miss starter Dan DeYoung threw six shutout innings, with two strikeouts. …The Rebels are 14-3 in non-SEC play, including nine straight wins. …Tupelo freshman Brad Henderson served as the DH and went 1-for-4, with a single and walk.