No. 7 Baseball Rolls Past Arkansas State for 30th Win
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SIDEBAR: Rebels Remain Unblemished In Midweek Games
By Davis McCool, Ole MissSports.com
OXFORD, Miss. -- Back at Swayze Field after an eight-game road trip, the No. 7 Ole Miss baseball team looked right at home Wednesday night, trouncing the Arkansas State Red Wolves, 10-3. Ole Miss (30-8, 8-7 SEC) picked up its 30th win of the season and improved to a perfect 11-0 in midweek contests, the best start in school history in the midweek.
Grae Kessinger and Thomas Dillard got the Rebel bats started early with a pair of two-run home runs in the second inning, and Ole Miss never looked back. The Rebels led by as many as nine runs, and Jordan Fowler kept the Red Wolves stifled at the plate.
Fowler picked up his fourth win of the season, improving to 4-0. The freshman lowered his ERA to 3.43 on the year, and his four wins place him just behind the trio of weekend starters and fellow midweek starter Houston Roth for most victories on the year, and the most for a freshman arm. Fowler's only blemish came in the second on a solo home run before he was relieved for Austin Miller after five complete pitched.
With a single in the first, Ryan Olenek extended his team-best hitting streak to 16 games, the most by any Rebel all season. Dillard's homer also gives him sole possession of the team's leaderboard with eight home runs on the year.
The Rebels struck first, beginning in the bottom of the opening inning. Ole Miss loaded the bases with just one out recorded in the game and plated Olenek on an RBI walk. Will Golsan expedited the action, knocking a two-out double to left-center, putting the Rebels up by three after just the first.
The second inning followed suit, and after a Red Wolves homer in the top half, Kessinger returned the favor with one of his own with one down in the frame, scoring himself and Jacob Adams. Dillard followed him up just three batters later, sending a line drive ball over the right field fence to plate a pair and give the Rebels the 7-0 lead after the second inning.
Ole Miss added two more in the fourth after leading the inning off with a pair of hits. Olenek knocked a single to right to ensure that he had yet another multi-hit game, and Nick Fortes followed him up with a double to put both of them in scoring position. Olenek left the ballgame while standing on third, shortly after fouling a ball off of his toe, and his pinch runner, Michael Spears, dart home on a wild pitch, and Fortes scored on an RBI groundout to give Ole Miss the nine-run advantage heading to the fifth.
Austin Miller, Connor Green, Will Stokes, and finally, Greer Holston, filled in to take over for Fowler after the fifth, going a combined 4.0 innings with two runs allowed, credited to Miller. Ole Miss improves to 30-8 and now turns their attention to the No. 12 Georgia Bulldogs, who will visit Oxford for a three-game series this weekend.
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