- Back-to-back two-run innings late in Wednesday's game lifted No. 13 Ole Miss (12-1) past Southeast Missouri, 6-4. Southeast falls below .500 at 6-7 on the season heading into Ohio Valley Conference play this weekend.
"The things I take away from tonight's game were Adam Pennington
's pitching performance and our defensive performance," Steve Bieser
remarked. "We ended up with some errors in the game but those errors were errors made on aggressive play making. I thought we responded really well after last night's game and not playing very competitively. In the end, it's a loss and it's upsetting we had a chance to put this game away in our favor but couldn't close it out."
The contest was highlighted by a seven-inning outing by Redhawk starter Adam Pennington
. Pennington allowed four runs on eight hits while striking out six Rebel hitters and walking none. At one point, Pennington retired eight consecutive Rebels.
"I thought Adam was phenomenal," Bieser added. "He had a shaky first inning but then really settled in and was able to throw three pitches for strikes. One of the things he was able to do well was spot his fastball on the inside corner and lock up a lot of hitters. His late go-to pitch was his changeup that had great late-life."Brady Wright
(0-2) suffered the loss after allowing the go-ahead runs to reach in the eighth inning.
Andy Pagnozzi started for Ole Miss on the mound. Pagnozzi pitched four innings and left the game with a 2-1 lead. Four Rebel relief pitchers combined to finish the game. Wyatt Short (1-0) earned the win as he was the pitcher of record when Ole Miss took its 6-4 lead in the eighth.
The Rebels found themselves with runners on second and third with one out in the bottom of the first inning. Colby Bortles, the cleanup hitter, knocked a ball that looked as if it could split the gap for a two-run double but was tracked down by Daniel Costello
to rob an extra-base hit and multiple runs. A run scored on the flyout to put Ole Miss out in front, 1-0.
Southeast evened the score in the following inning thanks to a key one-out error. Garrett Gandolfo
reached on a base hit up the middle. A fielding error by Bortles at third allowed Ryan Rippee
to reach and Gandolfo to move up to second with one out. Kylar Robertson
singled through the right side, allowing Gandolfo to score from second, tying the game, 1-1.
A fielding error by Branden Boggetto
in the bottom of the third led to an Ole Miss run and a 2-1 lead heading to the fourth inning.
Southeast Missouri found its first lead of the game with a three spot in the top of the sixth inning. Back-to-back walks to start the inning forced the Rebels to go to the bullpen. The second Rebel error of the game allowed Boggetto to reach and load the bases with no out. After two quick outs, Brian Lees
drove in Trevor Ezell
and Dan Holst
to give Southeast a 3-2 lead. With Robertson at the plate, Lees got caught in a rundown between first and second long enough for Boggetto to trot home and broaden the lead to 4-2.
A two-run home run by Will Golsan in the bottom of the seventh inning tied the game at four runs apiece.
Wright entered the game in relief of Pennington in the eighth inning and immediately gave up a walk and back-to-back base hits to load the bases. Justin Murphy
entered to work the Redhawks out of the late-inning jam. Following a fielder's choice, a two-RBI single by pinch-hitting Holt Perdzock scored the go-ahead runs, 6-4 Ole Miss.
Southeast was held to five hits in the game, led by Gandolfo's two-hit night. Holst's 12-game hitting streak was snapped but his on-base streak was extended to 13 games with two walks.
Three Rebel hitters put up two hits apiece in the game. In all, Ole Miss combined for 11 hits.
The Redhawks and Rebels combined for five errors in the game. Ole Miss's three errors led to no earned runs for the Rebel pitching staff.
Southeast Missouri will begin OVC play at Eastern Kentucky this weekend. Friday's game is slated to begin at 3 p.m., CT from Richmond, Kentucky.
When asked what his team needed to improve on heading into OVC play, Bieser said, "One of the things I'd like to see us do is be more clutch in our at bats. We finally had a really clutch at bat from Brian [Lees] when we had bases loaded. That really excited the team and got the team involved. With that being said, we need to learn how to control situations and take what we've been given. One of the things I tried to get our guys to focus on is the way Ole Miss took what was given to them. For example, when you have a runner on third with less than two out, it needs to be automatic that we can score him and we haven't done a very good job of that."