Rebels claim series opener over No. 8 LSU

Published 12:00 pm Friday, April 29, 2016

It was a much-anticipated series between the No. 9 Ole Miss baseball team and No. 8 LSU and the Rebels struck first, defeating the Tigers 7-6 on Thursday at Oxford-University Stadium.

Ole Miss (32-11, 11-8 Southeastern Conference) will go for the series win tonight at 6:30 p.m. (SEC Network+).

Fireworks littered the early stages of the game as both starters got knocked around for a combined 15 hits and eight runs, seven of them earned.

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Brady Bramlett took his usual start to begin the series but it was a short outing as the junior lasted 3 1/3 innings, giving up four runs, three earned, on seven hits and struck out two batters.

LSU took advantage of Bramlett’s shaky start, scoring two runs in the top of first inning for the quick 2-0 lead. Bramlett gave up two more runs in the third inning before exiting the game.

Jared Poche came out with a two-run lead in the home half of the first but immediately surrendered it, giving up two runs of his own. Second baseman Tate Blackman hit an RBI-single to plate Ryan Olenek followed up with a RBI-double from J.B. Woodman to score Blackman.

Poche gave up six hits the first two innings with five of those being doubles. The Tiger starter went four innings, giving up four runs and striking out three batters. The Rebels scored two more runs in the bottom of the third to answer LSU’s rally in the top-half of the inning to make it a 4-4 game.

It stayed that way until LSU broke the tie with a run in the top of the sixth inning. Ole Miss answered yet again, this time with a three-run inning to make the score 7-5, their first lead of the game.

The top four of the order each had multi-hit games Blackman going 3-for-4 with three runs batted in while short stop Errol Robinson went 2-for-5 with one RBI.

Defense wins

Woodman went 2-for-5 at the plate with two RBIs, but his biggest impact came on defense. Two times LSU sent a runner home from third that would have been the go-ahead and tying runs, respectively. The first time came in the fourth inning to keep it a 4-4 game and the second throw was in the eighth inning, preserving the 7-6 lead.