May 14, 2006
OXFORD, Miss. -
After home runs and convincing wins determined the first two games of the series, it was a wild finish on Sunday as No. 22 Ole Miss (33-19, 15-12 SEC) grabbed a 5-4 win over No. 10 Arkansas (35-17, 15-12 SEC) off a single up the middle from Chris Coghlan in the ninth inning.
The game winning hit was the third hit of the day for Coghlan, who went 3-for-4 at the plate with two RBI, two doubles and a run scored. Not only did the hit win the game and series for the Rebels, but it clinched a spot in the Southeastern Conference tournament for Ole Miss.
With one out on the board, a pinch hitting Jon-Jon Hancock came up with a single through the left side and was replaced at first by pinch runner Cody Overbeck. Overbeck advanced to third a batter later as Justin Henry singled through the right side. Overbeck then scored the game-winning run when Coghlan laced his shot up the middle.
"It was a big win today and I am very proud of these guys," said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. "It was a great crowd and for the first walk-off win this season to come against a team like Arkansas is big. Both clubs were playing for a lot. (We were playing) for the SEC West race and a chance to host a regional.
"Will (Kline) turned in a gutsy performance today. He walked the lead-off guy and threw a good pitch to Hamblin, but then he got on a roll. His performance in the ninth inning really got things going for us."
Kline (3-2) picked up the win out of the bullpen as he entered the game in the eighth and worked 2.0 innings, allowing no runs on one hit with two walks and five strikeouts. Two inherited runners scored on Kline as he entered the game with the go-ahead run at the plate and runners on first and second.
Devin Collis took the loss for the Razorbacks in relief as he worked 1.2 innings, giving up the one run on three hits while walking none and striking out three.
The Rebels looked to be in control early, scoring two runs in the third and a run in the fourth to go ahead of the Razorbacks 3-0. Arkansas responded with two runs in the sixth off a two-run homer from Jake Dugger to pull within one of the Rebels.
Ole Miss answered in the seventh, as Coghlan scored from second on a single up the middle from Zack Cozart. Coghlan was hit by a pitch to reach base and stole second to get into scoring position for Cozart.
A wild eighth inning saw Arkansas tie the game at four.
Reliever Garrett White, who had entered the game an inning earlier, walked the first two batters he faced and was replaced on the mound by Kline. Kline balked, moving Dugger to second and Craig Gentry to third. James Ewing drew a walk to load the bases. Danny Hamblin doubled down the left field line to score Gentry and Dugger, tying the game and leaving runners at second and third.
Kline stepped up to the rubber and turned in a clutch performance, striking out Clint Arnold in the next at bat before intentionally walking Blake Parker, loading the bases for a potential double play ball. Kline didn't need it as he struck out the next two batters, Logan Forsythe and Matt Willard, ending the inning and leaving the bases loaded with Razorbacks.
Kline again held Arkansas at bay in the top of the ninth, retiring the side in order before the Rebels rallied in the ninth to claim the win and the series.
Coghlan's two doubles on the day moved him into fifth-place all time on the career doubles list at Ole Miss with 49. He is now two doubles behind David Dellucci and Burney Hutchinson for third place in the all-time list.
The Rebels will return to action on Tuesday, hosting the final home game of the regular season in a showdown with the Memphis Tigers. Ole Miss defeated Memphis 8-4 earlier in the season at AutoZone Park. Game time is set for 6:30 p.m.