PEARL, Miss. -- Senior Scott Weathersby threw seven scoreless innings, and the Ole Miss baseball team used 15 hits to score 11 runs in a 11-1 thumping of Mississippi State in the annual Governor's Cup, Tuesday night, April 28, at Trustmark Park. The 10-run win for the Rebels (24-22) marked the largest margin of victory in the 36-year history of the Mayor's Trophy/Governor's Cup between the two archrivals.
Ole Miss re-claimed the Governor's Cup for the first time since 2012 behind a veteran arm out of the Rebels' bullpen. In the first start of his four-year career, Weathersby was brilliant, tossing seven scoreless innings. The senior right-hander allowed just six hits and walked one, while striking out three. For his outstanding performance, Weathersby was named the Governor's Cup Most Valuable Player.
"I was just trying to go inning by inning, working on that inning and just giving us a chance," said Weathersby. "I was just trying to work the zone and let our defense do the work, and they did that behind me tonight."
"The reason Scott was out there tonight, he's so good out of the pen, but we needed a win," noted head coach Mike Bianco. "We know for all of our fans, this was a huge game for us. We realize this is a rivalry (game), but if you look at where we are on the year, we need a `W' and Scott delivered tonight."
Fellow senior Sam Smith pitched the final two innings of the contest, giving up one run on two hits to go along with a pair of strikeouts.
Ole Miss recorded 15 hits paced once again by leadoff hitter Connor Cloyd. The junior went 3-for-6 with a career-high four RBI. Cloyd also produced his seventh-straight multi-hit game. Four more Rebels provided multi-hit games as Colby Bortles, Cameron Dishon, Austin Knight and Sikes Orvis all recorded two hits apiece. Bortles and Dishon each knocked in a pair of Rebels.
The Rebels gave senior Ross Mitchell (3-3) the loss for the Bulldogs (23-22), tallying four runs on five hits in just 2.1 innings. Mississippi State was forced to use six different pitchers throughout the evening to try to calm the hot Ole Miss bats.
After Weathersby retired the side in the first, three consecutive one-out hits gave Ole Miss the early two-run advantage. Back-to-back singles by J.B. Woodman and Will Golsan set the scene for the hot-hitting Bortles. The sophomore third baseman continued to be on fire, clearing the bases with a double to the gap in left-center field to give the Rebels a 2-0 lead.
The Bulldogs threatened in the third, loading the bases with one out. However, the veteran Weathersby struck out Wes Rea, MSU's cleanup hitter, before forcing a groundout to second to end the inning. After not allowing a run in the top half of the inning, Ole Miss batted around, sending 11 hitters to the plate and increasing its cushion to seven runs. Six Rebels recorded singles in the inning, including RBI base hits by Kyle Watson, Dishon and Cloyd. After three innings of play, the Rebels found themselves ahead, 7-0.
The Rebels added four more runs in the bottom of the sixth, increasing their lead to double digits. After a double by Knight and a single by Dishon scored a pair of Rebels, Cloyd smacked a base hit up the middle with the bases loaded to score two more, making the ballgame 11-0 in favor of Ole Miss.