Ole Miss

Ole Miss splits doubleheader with Arkansas, still win series

Ole Miss infielder Tate Blackman (4) helped the Rebels beat Arkansas on the road Friday.
Ole Miss infielder Tate Blackman (4) helped the Rebels beat Arkansas on the road Friday. Associated Press

Ole Miss wrapped up its weekend early, splitting a doubleheader with No. 10 Arkansas Friday at Baum Stadium. The Rebels (27-17, 11-10 SEC) took game one 4-1, while the Razorbacks (34-12, 13-8 SEC) avoided the sweep by taking game two 7-4.

Saturday’s series finale was moved up a day due to inclement weather. Splitting the twinbill along with winning the series opener last night, Ole Miss claimed the three-game SEC set. For the Rebels, it was the second victorious series over a top 10 team this season.

Ole Miss 4, Arkansas 1

In game one of Friday’s doubleheader, the Ole Miss baseball team batted around and scored four runs in the opening inning. That’s all the Rebels needed as their pitching limited No. 10 Arkansas to five hits in a 4-1 win. The victory clinched a conference series over the Razorbacks for the fifth time in the last six seasons.

Reigning SEC Freshman of the Week Ryan Rolison (6-2) matched his career high with 6.0 innings of work, allowing only one run on four hits to earn his second win in as many starts. Dallas Woolfolk earned his ninth save.

Tate Blackman and Nick Fortes produced multi-hit games to pace the Ole Miss bats. A two-RBI double by Fortes in the first ended up being the game-winning hit. The bottom of the lineup chipped in the three hits among Kyle Watson, Cooper Johnson and Grae Kessinger. Towards the top of the order, Colby Bortles and Will Golsan added one hit and one run apiece.

For the second straight game, the only run Arkansas got off Ole Miss pitching came via a solo home run. Grant Koch went deep for the Razorbacks, while left fielder Luke Bonfield went 2-for-4. The Rebels scored all four of their runs off starter Trevor Stephan (4-3), but he rebounded to finish 6.0 innings.

Game 2: Arkansas 7, Ole Miss 4

Game two was a back-and-forth battle. Ole Miss jumped out to a 3-0 lead early, before Arkansas responded with four runs in the middle innings to take its own lead. The Rebels tied the game in the seventh before the Razorbacks scored three in the eighth, hanging on to a 7-4 win.

Tate Blackman, Colby Bortles and Thomas Dillard recorded two hits apiece and each knocked in runs for the Rebels. Blackman started off the game by hitting a home run for the second consecutive night, belting his seventh homer of the season. Dillard added his fourth home run as well with a solo shot to left, the second from the right side of the plate for the switch hitter. Bortles finished off his solid weekend by going 2-for-3 with a double as well as the game-tying RBI single in the seventh.

In relief, redshirt-sophomore Brady Feigl pitched 2.1 scoreless innings, allowing just one hit. Despite not giving up an earned run, Will Stokes (1-1) suffered the loss when three unearned runs cross the plate during his appearance on the mound.