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Oxford, Mississippi

Rebels' high-powered offense dispatches Xavier

170 days ago
Ole Miss Athletics
Photo: Michael Wade

OXFORD, Miss. - The Ole Miss baseball team used strong pitching and high-powered offense to defeat Xavier 9-0 on Saturday afternoon.

Gunnar Hoglund threw a gem to pick up his first win of the season, tossing six scoreless innings and recording a career-high 12 punchouts. His 6.0 innings of work were a third of an inning away from tying his career-high.

Xavier's starter Nick Zwack only allowed three hits in 3.2 innings, but he allowed six free passes (four walks, two HBP) and was taken out after 84 pitches.

The Rebel offense was led by a trio of home runs by Cael Baker, Hayden Dunhurst and Anthony Servideo. Seven of the nine runs were scored on long balls today. Servideo led the way with three RBI and two HBP.

Both starters settled in after shaky first innings. Hoglund let two baserunners on in the first inning, but found his groove and struck out the side in the top of the second before sitting down the Musketeers in order in the third.

The Rebels threatened in the bottom of the first. Anthony Servideo got hit by a pitch before walks were drawn by Cael Baker and Ben Van Cleve to load the bases, but Ole Miss was unable to cash in early.

Cael Baker got the Rebels on the board with his third home run of the season, a two-run shot into deep left to make it 2-0 Ole Miss in the bottom of the third.

Xavier countered in the top of the fourth with a leadoff double. However, Hoglund didn't let the Musketeer baserunner come around to score and ended the inning with back-to-back strikeouts, giving him eight for the game, tying his career-high.

Bottom of the inning, the Rebels stranded the bases loaded for the second time in the first four innings. Jerrion Ealy moved Dunhurst over to third with his first career hit, a single to left center. Another hit by pitch put Servideo on first, but Ole Miss couldn't take advantage of the scoring opportunity.

Rebels doubled their lead in the bottom of the fifth after a two-run shot by Hayden Dunhurst, his second home run in as many days.

Austin Miller took over in the top half of the seventh inning and made quick work of the Musketeers in the seventh and eighth innings, sitting them down in order with five strikeouts, one off his career-high.

Ole Miss added to the lead when pinch-hitter Justin Bench doubled with the bases loaded in the bottom of the eighth to score Dunhurst and Cade Sammons. Next batter up, Anthony Servideo cleared the bases with a three-run bomb to the deepest part of the park, scoring Elko and Bench to make it 9-0 Rebels.

Cole Baker made his Rebel debut in relief of Miller, and put down the Musketeers in order to seal the Rebel victory.

Ole Miss will go for the series sweep tomorrow with first pitch set for high noon.

QUICK HITS

- Ole Miss improved to 5-1 on the season, and 2-0 all-time in the series with Xavier.

- Last time Rebels started a series with back-to-back shutouts was Mar. 10-11, 2017 against Furman.

- Rebels have struck out 28 Xavier batters with zero runs allowed through two games this weekend.

- Gunnar Hoglund had a career-high 12 strikeouts, surpassing his previous career high of eight.

- His 6.0 innings pitched was a third of an inning away from tying his career high.

- It took Hoglund 10 starts last year to record an outing going 6.0 innings pitched. He did it this year in two starts.

- Austin Miller had five Ks in relief, and was one off his career-high in strikeouts.

- Cael Baker hit his third home run of the season to lead the team. He was later tied by Servideo.

- Rebel center fielder Jerrion Ealy got his first career hit, a single in the bottom of the fourth.

- Hayden Dunhurst hit his second home run in as many days.

- Anthony Servideo hit his third home run of the young season, tying his career-high number for a season.

- The Rebels recorded the most strikeouts in a game (18) since Feb. 21, 2017 against Arkansas State (19).