OXFORD, Miss. – The Rebels got a pair of home runs in the first inning to stake a claim to an early lead and held on down the stretch as No. 14 Ole Miss (19-4, 2-2 SEC) opened the weekend series with a 4-3 win over Missouri (11-10, 1-3 SEC) Friday night at Swayze Field.
Austin Anderson hit a two-run shot in the first and Sikes Orvis added a solo home run to take the early 3-0 lead on the Tigers and the Rebels never trailed on the way to the series-opening win.
Chris Ellis (4-0) picked up the win, working 7.1 innings and allowing one unearned run on five hits with two walks and five strikeouts. Josh Laxer picked up the save, allowing one hit and striking out three batters over the final 1.2 innings after the Tigers had cut the lead to one-run in the eighth.
“Josh (Laxer) was terrific, and I’m really proud of him,” said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. “He’s done that basically the whole year. We didn’t want to go to him that early. With a 4-1 lead, we were hoping to extend the lead. We looked like we were in pretty good control of it, but it spiraled out very quickly. Three hitters later the winning run was coming to the play, so we had to go to Josh with an out in the eighth. You can’t be much better than what he did.
“Chris (Ellis) had his best outing in three or four weeks,” Bianco said. “He had really good command on all three pitches and got ahead of a lot of hitters. He got a little frustrated at times not being able to finish guys off, but that’s okay. He was ahead and put them defensive in a lot of at bats because he took control of the first and second pitch.”
John Miles (2-2) took the loss for the Tigers, allowing four runs on eight hits with a walk and five strikeouts in 7.1 innings of work. The right-hander was inserted into the starting lineup after Brett Graves, who was originally slated to start, was hit by a ball on an errant throw in pregame warm-ups.
The Rebels got off to the quick start with the pair of home runs in the first inning to take the 3-0 lead. Braxton Lee reached on a one-out single before Anderson drove him in with a two-run shot over the wall in right field. Two batters later, Orvis delivered his solo shot over the wall in right to put the home team up 3-0 on the Tigers.
Ole Miss added a fourth run in the third inning on an RBI single to right from Will Allen. Allen’s single drove in Bousfield from third after the junior opened the inning with a double to the wall in left center and took third on a bunt single from Lee.
The Tigers cut into the lead for the first time with an unearned run in the fifth when Keaton Steele came home from third on a passed ball with two outs. Steele opened the inning with a double and took third on a single from Logan Pearson before the passed ball got him home.
Missouri cut the lead to one in the eighth inning, pushing two more runs across the plate.
Ellis struck out the first batter before the Rebels went to the bullpen for left-hander Wyatt Short. Back-to-back doubles off the freshman brought the first run home and Ole Miss again turned to the bullpen for Preston Tarkington. A single to the next batter brought the second run home and the Rebels called on Laxer out of the bullpen.
The junior right-hander got the Rebels out of the inning, recording a strikeout and a runner thrown out on a steal attempt to send the game to the home half of the eighth on top 4-3. Laxer then kept the Tigers off the board in the ninth to close out the win.
Ole Miss and Missouri will return to the field for game two of the series at 1:30 p.m. Saturday.
Five Ole Miss Rebels were chosen as preseason All-SEC selections by some of the people who work closest with the student-athletes, the football media relations directors. The 14 football media relations directors of the Southeastern Conference institutions voted in the... read more
The preseason accolades just don't stop for the Ole Miss football team. Everywhere you look, Rebels can be found on preseason All-America teams. Lindy's Sports recognized seven Rebels for preseason honors, including four All-Americans. Four Ole Miss Football Rebels were... read more
With the season just 74 days away, members of the 2015 Ole Miss football team continue to earn recognition on Preseason All-America lists. Athlon Sports, the latest media outlet to release its 2015 college football preseason All-America team, gave five... read more
Preseason All-America football teams continue to roll in, and Ole Miss has been well represented each time.Today, the Sporting News unveiled its preseason All-America first and second teams, which includes a total of four Rebels.OT Laremy Tunsil and DT Robert... read more
Individual preseason accolades continue to pile up for the Ole Miss football team as college football magazines look toward the 2015 season. Athlon Sports is the latest magazine to release its preseason all-conference teams, June 10; the magazine named nine... read more
The start of summer heat and vacations is also the start of another tradition - preseason college football magazines.One of the first to produce a magazine every year is Phil Steele, whose 2015 version includes about as many Ole Miss... read more
Although they will not begin competing for the Rebels until the fall, several members of the 2015 signing class have arrived at Ole Miss to begin their college journey this summer. The first of two summer sessions offered at the... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewApril 28-May 4, 2015Baseball - The Rebels started the week defeating the Bulldogs, 11-1 in the annual Governor's Cup. The 10-run win for the Rebels marked the largest margin of victory in the 36-year history... read more
Welcome to Pittsburgh...and welcome to #SteelersNation, @Quez_G! #SteelersDraft pic.twitter.com/oY8wZc10Kk-- Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) May 2, 2015 Congrats Senquez Golson! Drafted 56th overall in the 2015 #NFLDRAFT by the Pittsburgh Steelers. #HottyToddy #FinsUp pic.twitter.com/EPGayDNOu7-- Ole Miss Football (@OleMissFB) May 2, 2015 Ole... read more
Six men with ties to Ole Miss were part of the inaugural class of 25 athletes and coaches inducted into the Scott County Hall of Fame this past Saturday at Roosevelt State Park in Morton. It is believed that this... read more
In a tie for 7th place at 7-under, @OleMissFB takes home $30,000 in charity and scholarship. #CFAPBGolf pic.twitter.com/qd0JzilyYR-- #CFAPBGolf (@CFAPeachBowl) April 28, 2015 The Ole Miss team of head football coach Hugh Freeze and Sean Tuohy turned in a strong... read more
The Ole Miss men's and women's tennis team learned their postseason destinations, as the men's and women's NCAA Tournament fields were announced Tuesday. The men, ranked No. 13 in the nation, are the No. 14 overall seed and will be... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewApril 21-27, 2015Baseball - During the five-game homestand, Ole Miss went 3-2 with a midweek win over Central Arkansas as well as claiming a weekend series over Alabama. - The Rebels recorded 68 hits throughout... read more
With a distance of 287-yards, the 2015 #CFAPBGolf Coaches Division Long Drive Champion is @CoachHughFreeze! pic.twitter.com/ProCdgbbg9-- #CFAPBGolf (@CFAPeachBowl) April 27, 2015 Ole Miss head football coach Hugh Freeze took home the long drive title at the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Challenge... read more