AUBURN, Ala. – For the third time in three outings, freshman right-hander Bobby Wahl entered with the game on the line and closed things out for the Rebels as Ole Miss (24-16, 9-8 SEC) defeated Auburn (21-17, 8-9 SEC) on Friday night by a score of 10-7.
The win evened the weekend series at a game each heading into Saturday’s series finale at noon on CSS.
David Goforth (3-5) picked up his second straight win as he worked 5.0 innings, allowing four runs on five hits with four walks and six strikeouts. Wahl picked up his third save of the season, holding Auburn off the board in the final 1.2 innings with one walk and four strikeouts after entering the game with two outs and a man on first in the eighth.
“Bobby was certainly clutch for us tonight,” said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. “We saw it last weekend and it was more of the same stuff from him tonight. (Coming into the game) on the road in the SEC with people on base; he did a terrific job.
“Matt Snyder looked good tonight. It’s hard to be the team we want to be without him playing well. It was nice to see him do what he did tonight.”
Ole Miss scored first, using an RBI single to center from Matt Smith to score Tanner Mathis from third. Mathis reached with a lead-off single, extending his hit streak to 23 games, before taking second on a wild pitch and going to third on a groundout from Alex Yarbrough. His score on the Smith hit gave the Rebels a 1-0 lead after the visitor’s half of the first.
Preston Overbey then hit a solo shot over the green monster in left field to give the Rebels the 2-0 lead in the second inning.
The Tigers got two runs back in the second inning, tying the game as a hit batter and a single put two men on with one out. A single and a groundout pushed both runners home to tie the game at two after two innings of play.
A leadoff walk and a single put two men on in the third inning before Matt Tracy came up with a single to left center that scored Mathis. Snyder then hit a three-run shot to right field that put Ole Miss on top of the Tigers 6-2.
Ole Miss pushed the lead out to six runs with a pair of scores in the fourth. With the bases loaded and one out, Matt Smith doubled to left field driving in two runs. Blake Newalu went home on the play, but missed the plate as the Auburn catcher positioned himself well and Newalu was forced to slide around him in an attempt to score on the throw home. The slide past the bag allowed Caldwell to tag Newalu out and keep the third run from scoring as Ole Miss went up 8-2.
Auburn got two runs back in the fifth in an awkward inning that saw a wild pitch and a balk bring runs home for the Tigers. Despite the wild frame, Ole Miss continued to lead 8-4 after five complete on the Plains.
The Rebels added two more runs in the seventh, using a pair of groundouts after loading the bases to take the lead out to 10-4 on the Tigers.
Auburn continued to chip away at the lead in the eighth, pushing three runs across the plate before Wahl entered the game and notched a pair of strikeouts around a walk to get the Rebels out of the inning up 10-7.
Wahl then kept the Tigers off the bags in the ninth to preserve the win.
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