OXFORD, Miss. –Matt Crouse continued to turn in solid outings on the mound, pitching 6.2 scoreless innings and combined with Jake Morgan for a shutout as Ole Miss (15-4, 1-0 SEC) opened Southeastern Conference play with a 4-0 win over Alabama (11-7, 0-1 SEC) on Friday night.
The Rebels have now allowed only one run in the last 45.0 innings of play following the shutout of the Crimson Tide.
Crouse (5-0) grabbed his fifth-straight win as the Friday starter for the Rebels, allowing only three hits with seven strikeouts in the 6.2 innings of work. Jake Morgan picked up his fifth save of the year, entering the game with two men on in the seventh and working the final 2.1 innings. He allowed four hits and struck out three on the night.
Nathan Kilcrease (2-1) suffered his first loss of the season, allowing four runs – two earned – on five hits with a walk and five strikeouts in 7.0 innings of work.
Zach Kirksey led the Rebel offense, going 1-for-2 at the plate with a two-run home run to get the scoring started for the Rebels. It was the third home run of the season for the junior outfielder.
“It was a typical Friday night in the Southeastern Conference,” said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. “It was a well pitched game. I thought Matt Crouse was terrific tonight. Zach Kirksey was able to get the big home run and we were able to take advantage of some opportunities and put together an inning. Jake Morgan was tremendous there at the end.”
It was a pitcher’s duel through the early innings as neither team could muster a run through the first four innings of play.
Ole Miss got on the board in the fifth when Kirksey came up with a big home run to left center that scored Miles Hamblin and gave the Rebels a 2-0 lead. Hamblin opened the inning with a single before moving to second on a sac bunt from Austin Anderson before the Kirksey hit.
The Rebels continued to take advantage of opportunities in the inning, using a pair of errors to push two more runs home. Blake Newalu reached on a single to left, and scored a batter later when Tanner Mathis singled through the right side. The Alabama right fielder misplayed the ball, allowing Newalu to score from first and Mathis to advance to third on the play.
Mathis scored two batters later when a fielding error at second on a ground ball from Matt Smith allowed him to score as Smith reached safely to give the Rebels a 4-0 lead.
Alabama threatened in the seventh, putting two men on with two outs. The Rebels then turned to the bullpen for Morgan who struck out the first batter faced to end the Crimson Tide rally. Alabama would again get a man to third in the ninth, but Morgan preserved the shutout with a strikeout and a fielder’s choice to give the Rebels the win.
Ole Miss and Alabama will take the field for the second game of the series Saturday at 2 p.m. at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field. The game will be televised by SportSouth as a part of the SEC television package.
The SEC Network will air every SEC spring football game with multiple viewing opportunities on both television and the network's digital platforms. All 12 spring football games will be carried live and in full on SEC Network + with additional... read more
Through the first seven spring practices, or three weeks since the start of spring practice on March 3, there does not appear to be any separation between sophomores Ryan Buchanan and DeVante Kincade and junior college transfer Chad Kelly. Whether... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review March 17-23, 2015 Men's Basketball - Ole Miss scored 62 second-half points to overcome a 17-point halftime deficit, rallying past 11th-seeded BYU 94-90 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Tuesday. -... read more
The men's basketball team saw its run in the NCAA Tournament come to an end in the Round of 64 after a thrilling win in the First Four. The women's basketball team won two postseason WNIT games to continue its... read more
Junior left-hander Christian Trent and sophomore right-hander Brady Bramlett picked up quality starts on the mound, and the offensive provided some timely hits, which proved to be a winning formula as Ole Miss claimed the weekend series over No. 1... read more
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A four-year starter at point guard, one of the most accomplished players in program history, senior Jarvis Summers saw his Ole Miss career come to an end, as did four of his fellow seniors in LaDarius White,... read more
From his five years at Cincinnati, three as an assistant coach and one each as associate head coach and interim head coach, head coach Andy Kennedy knows and has experienced the Xavier program first hand, having coached against the Musketeers... read more
Ole Miss has gone through a two-day turn twice, as well as a one-day turn when the Rebels played No. 23 Creighton and Cincinnati in back-to-back days at the Emerald Coast Classic, but they haven't gone through a turn quite... read more
Giant Killers come in many different shapes and forms in the NCAA Tournament. They are not just your teams from smaller and mid-major conferences, but also your lower-seeded power-conference teams. As defined by ESPN's Peter Keating and Jordan Brenner, Giants Killers... read more
March Madness reigned in Dayton, as 11th-seeded Ole Miss scored 62 second-half points to overcome a 17-point halftime deficit, rallying past 11th-seeded BYU 94-90 in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Tuesday. The nation watched, and they reacted to... read more
Talking to members of the local media Sunday before leaving for Dayton on Monday, head coach Andy Kennedy and senior guard Jarvis Summers spoke of a familiarity with BYU, their First Four opponent, from watching the Cougars' 73-60 win at... read more