OXFORD, Miss. (WCBI/Ole Miss Athletics) – The Ole Miss baseball team jumped out to an 8-1 lead after the first two innings, cruising to a 14-6 midweek win over UAPB Wednesday night at Swayze Field. The Rebels (23-14) plated six runs in the second, tying their highest offensive output in an inning all season, to remain undefeated all-time (7-0) against the Golden Lions (12-24).
Eleven Rebels recorded hits throughout the night, led by third baseman Colby Bortles. The senior went 3-for-3 with three RBI and two runs. Ryan Olenek and Tim Rowe added three RBI as well, producing doubles to knock in multiple runs. In his second start of the season, sophomore DJ Miller hit his first career home run. Ten different Rebels scores runs as well with Tate Blackman crossing the plate a game-high three times. Off the bench, Ole Miss went 3-for-4 pinch hitting as Bryce Blaum, Michael Fitzsimmons and Bryan Seamster chalked up singles.
On the mound, freshman Greer Holston (2-2) won his second game in as many starts. The righty lasted 5.0 innings and struck out a career-high seven hitters. Fellow freshman Houston Roth tossed a pair of innings without allowing a run and tallied four strikeouts. Redshirt-senior Sean Johnson worked himself out of a jam for a scoreless frame of his own.
Second baseman Aderly Perez hit two home runs to pace UAPB at the plate, while two other Golden Lions recorded multi-hit games. Starting pitcher Nathan Sawrie (2-4) took the loss, allowing eight runs (three earned) on six hits and three walks through 2.0 innings.
Despite UAPB scoring the game’s first run on a solo home run by Perez in the top of the first, the Rebels countered with two runs in their opening at-bats. After Blackman led off the inning with a walk, Will Golsan executed a perfect hit-and-run to put runners on the corners. On the first pitch he saw, Colby Bortles ripped a double to left field to plate Blackman and move Golsan to third. A sacrifice fly by Olenek brought Golsan home as Ole Miss claimed a 2-1 lead at the end of the opening frame.
After Holston tossed a scoreless inning, the Rebels batted around in the second. Miller began the inning with a leadoff blast to left field. Ole Miss loaded the bases with two outs, taking advantage of a UAPB miscue that allowed a run to score and kept the inning alive. Rowe quickly cleared the bases with a double down the right field line, and Nick Fortes doubled him across the dish. The six-run inning built the Ole Miss advantage to 8-1.
The Golden Lions answered with three runs in the third to cut the margin to four, but Holston tossed back-to-back scoreless frames to end his outing on a solid note. Ole Miss got the runs back in the sixth. Once again with runners on first and third, Bortles knocked in another run with his third hit of the evening on a single to center field, and the senior moved to second on the throw home. With two Rebels in scoring position, Olenek plated the pair to bring the cushion back to seven, 11-4.
Bortles added a sacrifice fly in the seventh, his sixth of the season to top the SEC. One inning later, Fitzsimmons and Seamster smacked consecutive pinch hits before scoring. Cooper Johnson’s RBI groundout brought in Fitzsimmons before Kyle Watson singled in Seamster. In the ninth, Perez hit his second home run of the night to give UAPB two more runs for the game’s 14-6 final tally.
This weekend, the Rebels welcome Missouri to Oxford for SEC play (April 21-23). The three-game series against the Tigers will be Military Appreciation Weekend at Swayze Field. It all begins Friday night (April 21) at 6:30 p.m. under the lights. Game two is set for Saturday evening with a 4 p.m. first pitch, while the series finale is slated for 1:30 p.m. All three games will be broadcast on SECN+ with Richard Cross and David Dellucci on the call. David Kellum and Keith Kessinger will also provide coverage of the series on the airwaves of the Ole Miss IMG Sports Network.
- Ole Miss improved to 7-0 all-time versus UAPB.
- Eleven different Rebels recorded hits throughout the night, and 10 different Rebs scored runs.
- With a solo homer to lead off the bottom of the second, sophomore DJ Miller homered for the first time in his career.
- Miller is the 14th Rebel to hit a home run this season.
- Nick Fortes reached base for the ninth straight game.
- Greer Holston earned his second career win in as many starts, striking out a career-high seven hitters over 5.0 innings.
- Tim Rowe ripped a bases-loaded double in the second for a career-high three RBI.
- The six-run second inning tied for the Rebels’ biggest offensive inning of the year (six-run sixth at Kentucky, March 23, 2017).
- With a two-run double in the sixth, Ryan Olenek hit his team-leading 13th double of the year.