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Ole Miss blanks Nicholls for fourth straight shutout

BILOXI — Playing on the Mississippi Coast for the first time in 106 years, No. 14 Ole Miss increased its shutout streak to four games with a 5-0 win over Nicholls Tuesday night at MGM Park in Biloxi. The Rebels (12-5) broke out the bats while their pitching limited the Colonels (9-7) to only four hits.

For the sixth consecutive game, an Ole Miss starting pitcher did not allow a run. The streak began last Tuesday with Ryan Rolison, and the freshman continued what he started with a career-long six innings on the mound. The Jackson, Tennessee native surrendered only four hits and a walk while tallying a career-high seven strikeouts in his second start.

At the plate, Ole Miss reached double digits in hits. Tate Blackman used a two-run homer and a triple to knock in three runs to lead the way. Will Golsan, Thomas Dillard and Bryan Seamster added two hits apiece with Dillard hitting his second home run of the season. Along with his multi-hit game, Seamster made a pair of spectacular catches in left field, his first start as a Rebel.

The Rebels jumped on the board right away. Rolison pitched a scoreless first before Blackman belted his two-run homer to give Ole Miss a 2-0 lead. Golsan led off the inning with an infield single. Two batters later, Blackman sent a blast that soared over the scoreboard in left field to put the Rebels in front.

The top of the order doubled the Ole Miss advantage in the top of the third. Golsan started the scoring frame once again with an infield single. Then Blackman nearly left the yard for the second time, but the ball caromed off the wall as the second baseman motored to third. Golsan scored easily, and Colby Bortles followed with a sacrifice fly to make in 4-0 in favor of Ole Miss.

After retiring the side in back-to-back innings, Rolison added a scoreless sixth to finish his impressive outing. In the bottom half of the frame, Dillard smoked a ball into the left-center gap that easily cleared the fence. The solo homer increased the Rebels’ lead to 5-0.

Following the midweek contest, the Rebels will return home to lift the lid on Southeastern Conference play by hosting No. 15 Vanderbilt starting Friday. The first two games of the series will air on SEC Network Plus while the series finale will be a national television broadcast. Friday’s contest will begin at 7 p.m. before an afternoon matinee is set for 1:30 p.m. Saturday. To close out the weekend, the Rebels and Commodores will square off at 3 p.m. on SEC Network.