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BLOG: No. 8 LSU levels series with win over Rebels

James McArthur gets his first Southeastern Conference start of his career on Saturday morning, which is enough pressure on its own.

LSU just added a little bit more to it.

The No. 8 Tigers took the second game of the series with a 6-3 win over No. 9 Ole Miss on Friday night at Oxford-University Stadium. The rubber match for the crucial series, and to stay tied for second place in the SEC’s Western Division, will be at 11 a.m. on Saturday.

The start was very similar to Thursday’s series opener with offense coming quickly for both clubs. LSU (28-15, 11-9 SEC) took a quick 1-0 lead off a sacrifice fly by catcher Jordan Romero to score right fielder Antoine Duplantis in the top of the first inning.

David Parkinson took the mound for the Rebels (32-12, 11-9) and worked 4 2/3 innings, allowing four runs on nine hits while striking out one and issuing two walks. The Tigers scored a run in the second and two in the third before Parkinson’s night was over.

Alex Lange was the starter for LSU and pitched his second complete game in as many starts. The right-hander gave up three runs on seven hits while striking out seven and issued only one free pass.

Ole Miss answered in the home half of the first when J.B. Woodman hit a two-run home run, his sixth of the season, to give the Rebels a 2-1 lead. Woodman was the only Ole Miss hitter to have a multi-hit game, going 2-for-3 with the two runs batted in.

Will Golsan was responsible for the Rebels’ other run with an RBI single in the fourth inning to score Woodman, making it a 4-3 LSU lead at the time.

There was a little bit of drama when Romero was ejected after colliding with catcher Henri Lartigue at the plate and being called out for his shoulder-charge slide. The umpire ejected him for unsportsmanlike conduct, and he will miss Saturday’s game due to the ejection.

Ole Miss left four runners on base while hitting 3-for-11 with runners on and 2-for-5 with runners in scoring position. The Rebels also hit into two double plays that ended the inning and scoring threat both times.

The Tigers added two more runs in the sixth off of Connor Green, who replaced Parkinson in the fifth. Both runs were unearned with the first one coming off a throwing error by Green to first base off a bunt when second baseman Tate Blackman could not haul in the throw, allowing first baseman Greg Deighmann to score for the Tigers. The second run came off an RBI groundout by Duplantis to score third baseman Chris Reid for the winning margin.

McArthur will go against LSU’s John Valek III on Saturday.