OXFORD, Miss. - The Rebels pounded out 15 hits, including three home runs, and senior Zach Kirksey drove in seven runs to help No. 14 Ole Miss (10-2) power past UT-Martin (3-10) by a score of 20-4 on Tuesday night at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field.
Kirksey paced a torrid Rebel offense on the night, going 2-for-4 with a pair of home runs, seven RBI and three runs scored. Austin Anderson (3-for-5), Auston Bousfield (2-for-3) and Alex Yarbrough (3-for-4) tallied multiple hits along with Kirksey as nine Rebels recorded a hit in the outing.
Matt Snyder also hit a three-run home run in the first inning to get the offense started for the Rebels.
"Obviously this was a really good night for us offensively," said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. "Kirksey was tremendous and continues to swing a very hot bat. There were several guys that were very good for us tonight.
"This was not Sam Smith's best outing but he hung in there," Bianco said. "It puts pressure on the young guys when get a big lead like that. I think it was Josh Laxer's best outing of the year. Aaron Greenwood did what he was supposed to do and put the ball in the strike zone."
Laxer (2-0) picked up the win for the Rebels, entering the game in the fourth inning to relieve starter Sam Smith. Laxer allowed one run on two hits in 2.1 innings of work. Smith worked 3.2 innings in the start, allowing two runs on four hits with two walks and six strikeouts.
Dalton Potts (0-1) took the loss for the Skyhawks, working 1.1 innings and allowing five runs on two hits with three walks. He gave up a three-run shot to Snyder in the first inning before putting two men on base in the second inning that went on to score off a single to right from Yarbrough after Potts left the game.
With the 5-0 lead after two innings, the Rebels continued to add to the run total, scoring in every inning of play except the fourth. Ole Miss got two runs in the third inning on a home run to right field from Kirksey before failing to score in the fourth inning.
The Rebels scored a single run in the fifth inning on a hit down the right field line from Anderson, and pushed two more runs home in the sixth inning on a fielder's choice from Andrew Mistone and a sac fly from Kirksey.
Sikes Orvis added another run in the seventh inning on a groundout to short that scored Senquez Golson. Golson scored four runs on the night, tying for the team lead with Bousfield, despite not recording a hit in seven at bats. The freshman reached base four times and came around to score each time.
The eighth inning proved to be the most productive offensively for the Rebels, who sent 15 men to the plate on the way to a nine-run inning.
Tennessee-Martin scored single runs in the third, fourth and fifth frames before a solo home run from Jordan Owen in the eighth inning capped the scoring for the Skyhawks. It was the first home run surrendered by the Rebels this season.
Ole Miss will return to action this weekend, hosting the Houston Cougars in a three-game series at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field. Friday night's contest is set for 6:30 p.m., while Saturday's game is set for a 1:30 p.m. start and Sunday's series finale is set to begin at noon.
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