OXFORD, Miss. –Tanner Mathis went 2-for-4 with two RBI while Bobby Wahl and R.J. Hively combined to hold the Volunteers’ bats in check as No. 24 Ole Miss (32-18, 12-13 SEC) defeated Tennessee (24-25, 8-17 SEC) by a score of 4-2 on Friday night in the series opener.
Wahl (6-1) picked up the win with 7.0 innings of work and allowed two runs on five hits with two walks and six strikeouts. Hively then picked up his third save of the season with 2.0 scoreless and hitless innings, retiring all six batters faced and posting four strikeouts.
Dalton Saberhagen (5-2) pitched a complete game for Tennessee, allowing four runs on 11 hits with two walks and two strikeouts in the outing.
“It’s nice to win on Friday,” said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. “We haven’t done that in a while. Bobby (Wahl) was terrific. Offensively, Coach Godwin really had the guys locked in. Even though we only scored four runs, we looked good offensively all night long. We got some good swings. Blake Newalu got big hit run early. Preston Overbey was only in for two at-bats, but he swung the bat well. Auston Bousfield continues to swing well for us. We had another clean night defensively. We were able to answer their score and that’s big momentum wise.”
Tennessee struck first, pushing home a run in the second inning when Chris Fritts scored from third on a sac bunt from Parker Wormsley. Fritts reached on a lead-off walk and moved first to third on a single up the middle from Chris Pierce. Wahl then got a groundout and a strikeout of the next two batters after the sac bunt to limit the damage in the inning.
Ole Miss responded in the home half of the inning, driving in three runs on four straight hits to open the inning. Bousfield led things off with a double to left center before scoring on a single to right field from Overbey. Newalu then doubled to put two men in scoring position before Mathis delivered a single up the middle to drive in both Overbey and Newalu and put the Rebels on top 3-1.
The Vols cut the lead to one run in the sixth inning when Zach Osborne scored from third on an infield single to third base from Pierce with two outs on the board. Osborne singled to right before taking second on a groundout to first from Davis Morgan. Drew Steckenrider walked before a double steal with Osborne and Steckenrider would put two men in scoring position. The Rebels struck out the next batter before Osborne would score on the Fritts single to make it 3-2.
Tennessee would try another delayed steal with runners at first and third, but the Rebels caught the lead runner, Steckenrider, in a rundown between third and home and got the out to end the inning.
For the second time on the night, Ole Miss answered a Tennessee score with one of its own in the bottom half of the inning. Newalu delivered a sac fly to center field to score Bousfield and Ole Miss reclaimed a two-run lead at 4-2 that would hold down the stretch.
Ole Miss and Tennessee will return to action at 4 p.m. on Saturday at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field. It will be senior day for the Rebels who will honor five seniors in pregame ceremonies. The game will be televised by SportSouth.
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewJan. 20-26, 2015Men's Basketball - Senior guard Jarvis Summers scored 4 points in the final 26.6 seconds to lift Ole Miss to a 72-71 victory over Florida Saturday. Summers scored a team-high 16 points, including... read more
Classes started on the Ole Miss campus this past week, as the men's and women's basketball teams enter the heart of Southeastern Conference play. Some of the spring sports have started their 2015 seasons, while others are gearing up for... read more
Former Ole Miss safety Cody Prewitt capped an impressive week at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama, with a game-high five tackles in the game itself Saturday. His former teammate, cornerback Senquez Golson sat out the game with a hamstring... read more
Ole Miss closes out a three-game stretch in which they will have faced three consecutive ranked opponents when they welcome No. 18 Mississippi State on Thursday night. The Rebels are 1-1 through the first two games of the stretch, having... read more
Photo GalleryCody Prewitt and Senquez Golson will represent Ole Miss in the Senior Bowl, which will take place Saturday at 3 p.m. CT from Mobile, Alabama, and will be televised by the NFL Network. The duo have already had a busy... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewJan. 13-19, 2015Men's Basketball - Ole Miss thrashed No. 19 Arkansas 96-82 on Saturday. The Rebels picked up their first true road win over a ranked opponent since 2003 and scored the second-most points ever... read more
The Ole Miss men's and women's basketball teams both made some history, while the men's and women's tennis teams started their spring seasons. National Signing Day (Feb. 4) and the start of baseball season (Feb. 13) are less than a... read more
After an up-and-down non-conference slate that included wins over Creighton, Cincinnati and Oregon, all away from home, and losses to Charleston Southern and Western Kentucky, both at home, Ole Miss learned a lot about itself in the first week of... read more
Ole Miss football finished the 2014 football season with a 9-4 record and a top-20 final national rankings in both polls. The Rebels come in at No. 17 in the Associated Press poll and No. 19 in the Amway Coach... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewJan. 6-12, 2015Women's Basketball - Ole Miss went 2-0 on the week with a road win at Florida and a win at home against Alabama, moving to 13-4 overall and 3-1 in SEC action while... read more
The Ole Miss men's basketball team opened SEC play, while the Ole Miss women's basketball team continued SEC play, as we enter the heart of college basketball season. Over the weekend, the men's and women's teams posted wire-to-wire wins on... read more
Ole Miss looks to reverse history, as the Rebels (9-4) travel to No. 1 Kentucky tonight (6 p.m., SEC Network), the Southeastern Conference opener for both teams. Ole Miss is 0-15 all-time against the nation's top ranked team, last playing... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewDec. 29, 2014-Jan. 5, 2015Football- The No. 9 Ole Miss football team finished the 2014 football season with a 9-4 record, its best since 2009, after a 42-3 defeat to No. 6 TCU in the... read more