OXFORD, Miss. (Ole Miss Athletics) – A pitcher’s duel went the way of the Bulldogs on Saturday as No. 11 Ole Miss (36-15, 16-10 SEC) fell to Georgia (25-24-1, 10-15-1 SEC) by a score of 2-0 in game two of a weekend series at Swayze Field.
Scoreless through seven innings, Georgia pushed the first run of the game across the plate in the eighth and added an insurance run in the ninth on the way to the win to even the series at a game each. The decisive game three of the series will be played at 1:30 p.m. Sunday.
Aaron Greenwood (1-1) took the loss in relief for the Rebels, allowing two runs on five hits with a pair of strikeouts. Christian Trent worked 6.2 scoreless innings in the start, leaving the game in the seventh with two outs and the bases loaded.
Greenwood struck out the first batter faced to get the Rebels out of the jam and keep the game scoreless, but the Bulldogs scratched out a run in the eighth with a two-out rally.
Robert Tyler (5-4) picked up the win for the Bulldogs, pitching a complete game as he held the Rebels to three hits and recorded four strikeouts.
“(Robert) Tyler was just terrific,” said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. “We knew he had a big time fastball, but today he threw an outstanding changeup. When you have that kind of fastball and are able to mix your off-speed in, it makes it very difficult. They didn’t give us any opportunities. We didn’t have many base runners on. You have to tip your hat because they got some clutch base hits. It’s a tough one. He was really good, and we weren’t good enough today.”
Ole Miss got its best chance of the day in the first inning when Braxton Lee doubled to open the game. He was thrown out at third in the next at bat as the Rebels lay down a bunt to try to get him over and Georgia beat him to the bag with the throw and applied the tag to squelch the would-be rally.
The Rebels would get base runners on in the fourth, fifth, sixth and ninth innings, but were unable to get them home as Tyler held the home team in check each frame.
Ole Miss got out of jams throughout the first seven innings as well, putting down attempted rallies from Georgia in the fourth and fifth before getting out of the bases-loaded jam in the seventh.
The Bulldogs were successful in getting a run home in the eighth, putting together a two-out rally to take the lead. Conor Welton opened the frame with before moving to third on a sac bunt and groundout in the next two at bats. With two outs on the board, Daniel Nichols sent one through the right side to score Welton and give Georgia the lead.
An insurance run came home in the ninth when back-to-back singles from Jess Posey and Michael Bell put two men on. Welton then delivered a two-out single up the middle to plate the insurance run before Ole Miss’ Wyatt Short would enter the game to get the Rebels out of the inning.
There would be no answer in the home half of the ninth as the Rebels got a man with a hit batter, but a pair of fly outs and a ground out ended the inning.