MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- The Ole Miss baseball team used clutch hitting to rally from a three-run deficit past the Memphis Tigers, 7-5, Tuesday night at AutoZone Park in downtown Memphis. The Rebels (15-14) recorded 13 hits, including seven with two outs, to claim the midweek win over the Tigers (17-7).
"To beat a good Memphis team on the road, here in downtown Memphis, in front of a lot of Ole Miss fans in the stands, hopefully this will be something that jumpstarts us," mentioned Ole Miss Head Baseball Coach Mike Bianco.
Sophomores Colby Bortles and J.B. Woodman, as well as freshman Will Golsan, recorded three hits each to tie their career highs in a single game. Golsan reached base four times, Bortles knocked in a game-high three runs, and Woodman hit his fourth home run of the season to lead the Ole Miss bats. Sophomore Errol Robinson also added a pair of hits and crossed the plate twice. Senior Sikes Orvis joined the fun with a key 2-RBI double, his seventh of the season.
Sophomore Evan Anderson tossed the first 3.2 innings, giving up three runs (one earned) on six hits. Fellow southpaw Matt Denny (1-0) picked up the win in his first decision of the season, allowing one run on one hit in one inning of relief. Nailing down a game for the second-consecutive Ole Miss victory, sophomore Wyatt Short (4) recorded four outs to earn his team-high fourth save of the season.
Kane Barrow went 4-for-5 to lead Memphis in the loss, while Chris Carrier added a home run as part of his three-hit night. The Tigers tallied 12 hits on the evening. The Rebels got three runs off starter Alex Gunn over his five innings of work before knocking Colton Hathcock (0-1) around for three more scores.
Memphis struck first, tallying three hits and taking advantage of an Ole Miss error to plate a pair of runs in the opening inning. The Tigers added another in the second on a solo home run by Chris Carrier, taking a 3-0 lead.
Ole Miss tied the game with three runs in the top of the fifth due to four-straight hits with two outs in the inning. Errol Robinson and J.B. Woodman started the rally as both Rebels went to the opposite field for base hits. Sensing some momentum, Bortles lined the first pitch he saw into left field, bringing Robinson around to score. Orvis followed with a bases-clearing double that rolled all the way to the wall in left-center field, knotting the game at three runs apiece.
Two innings later, the top of the order led the charge once again as the Rebels grabbed the lead for the first time in the contest. Golsan reached base for the third time by drawing a four-pitch walk before Robinson singled to right field in back-to-back at-bats for the Ole Miss shortstop. Golsan scampered to third on the base hit, and then raced home on a wild pitch to put the Rebels ahead by one. Bortles continued his hot night with a double to left that plated two more to increase the cushion to three. When the dust finally settled heading into the seventh-inning stretch, Ole Miss held a 6-3 advantage.
The Tigers tallied runs in the seventh and eighth to cut the Rebels' lead to a single run, but Woodman gave Ole Miss a little breathing room with an opposite field solo home run in the top of the ninth. Memphis threatened in their last attempts at the plate, putting two on base, but Short locked down the ballgame for another Ole Miss victory.
The Rebels will return to Swayze Field this weekend, hosting the University of Tennessee in SEC action. Game one will begin at 6:30 p.m. CT Friday night, April 3, with junior Christian Trent expected to take the mound. Ole Miss will send out redshirt-sophomore Brady Bramlett for game two Saturday, April 4, scheduled to start at 4:00 p.m. CT. The finale of the conference series is set for Sunday afternoon, April 5, at 1:30 p.m. CT.