Ole Miss wins fourth-straight with victory over No. 22 Southern Miss

Published 11:00 am Wednesday, March 8, 2023

No. 4 Ole Miss jumped out to a big lead early, but 22nd-ranked Southern Miss closed the gap before the Rebels won 11-5 in midweek baseball.

Ole Miss is now 11-2 on the season after the victory at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field, while the Golden Eagles are 8-4. The two teams will meet again on March 28 in Pearl.

The Rebels led 8-1 through five innings Tuesday night before USM rallied to cut the lead to 8-5. But Ole Miss expanded its lead back to six to win it.

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After Southern Miss got a run in the top of the first inning, a Kemp Alderman blast to deep center with one aboard appeared it might get out to give Ole Miss a lead. But it was caught just shy of being a home run, and after one it remained 1-0 Golden Eagles.

In the USM second, the bases were loaded with two outs when Tate Parker grounded to Jacob Gonzalez to end the frame with no runs.

In the Rebel second, Ole Miss added a leadoff home run to right by Anthony Calarco to tie things at 1-1. After there was one out in the second, Peyton Chatagnier launched one to left and out of Swayze for a 2-1 Ole Miss lead. That’s the way things stood after two complete.

After a scoreless top of the third for USM, the Rebels added a run on a bases loaded balk by relief pitcher Tyler Martin. It was 3-1 Ole Miss heading to the fourth.

After Rebel starter JT Quinn made quick work of the Golden Eagles in the top of the fourth, Ole Miss added four runs for a 7-1 advantage. Ethan Lege singled to score Chatagnier, who had reached on a hit by pitch. Gonzalez singled, then Ethan Groff doubled to score one run and Calvin Harris singled to score two more runs.

In the fifth, Ole Miss scored again, this time on a TJ McCants homer over the right field wall for an 8-1 lead. But USM was about to make a game of it in the sixth.

The Golden Eagles had already put up four runs in the inning, and the bases were loaded with one out when Jackson Kimbrell replaced Mitch Murrell on the mound. But Golden Eagle Slade Wilks would be the only batter Kimbrell faced in the inning as Wilks hit the ball right back to Kimbrell who then threw home for an out. Calvin Harris completed the inning-ending double play by throwing to first for the third out.

With their lead that just minutes earlier had been seven runs but was now down to three, the Rebels went back to work on offense. Ole Miss had three hits with the final one an RBI single for Calarco that scored Harris who had also reached on a single. It was 9-5 Rebels after six innings.

After a leadoff walk by Carson Paetow in the top of the seventh, Kimbrell was replaced on the mound by Sam Tookoian. The Golden Eagles did not score in the inning.

Ole Miss added two seventh-inning runs for an 11-5 lead. Gonzalez singled to left to score Chatagnier, who had reached on a base hit. Riley Maddox, pinch running for Will Furniss who had walked, scored from third as Groff fouled out to right field, allowing the runner to score.

Rebel starter Quinn got the win to remain perfect at 3-0. USM starter Colby Allen (0-1) was charged with the loss.

The Rebels continue non-conference action this weekend at home with a three-game series against Purdue, the fourth Big Ten team Ole Miss has faced in 2023. The Rebels are 3-1 against Maryland and 1-0 against both Minnesota and Nebraska.