Baseball Wins 2018 SEC Tournament Championship

HOOVER, Ala. - In front of the second-largest crowd in SEC Tournament Championship Game history, No. 4 Ole Miss baseball left no doubt, crushing LSU 9-1 to secure the third tournament title in program history.

The Rebel offense exploded for nine runs on 15 hits, including a decisive four-run seventh inning, while a combination of Houston Roth, Will Stokes, Ryan Rolison and Greer Holston held LSU to just one run on four hits in a dominant victory.

LSU scored first on a pair of first-inning doubles by Antoine Duplantis and Daniel Cabrera, but it was all Rebels from there. Will Golsan opened the inning second with a base hit and moved to second on a Tim Rowe groundout, scoring on a base knock by Chase Cockrell.

Roth settled in during the second inning, retiring the Tigers in order. Nick Fortes continued his red-hot SEC Tournament with a leadoff single and came around to score after some strong base running. The second-team All-SEC catcher stole second, moved to third on a deep fly ball by Thomas Dillard and scored on a wild pitch to put the Rebels up 2-1.

The Rebel offense kept rolling in the fourth after a leadoff double by Jacob Adams and a bunt single by Anthony Servideo, who entered in the second in place of Grae Kessinger. Fortes then delivered his third hit of the day and ninth of the tournament to send Adams home.

Stokes relieved Roth with one out and one on in the fourth and struck out LSU's Zach Watson and got the Tigers' top bat Antoine Duplantis to fly out to center to escape the jam unscathed. Roth finished at 4.1 innings with just one run allowed on four hits and a walk with four strikeouts.

Rolison entered after a leadoff walk in the sixth, making his first relief appearance of the season and struck out Jake Slaughter and Hal Hughes with the bases loaded to escape the jam and preserve the Rebels' 3-1 lead.

Ole Miss carried that momentum in the seventh. Fortes once again led off with a single and Dillard reached on a walk. The two advanced into scoring position on a passed ball, and Golsan delivered on a two-strike count, roping a single down the right field line to give the Rebels a 5-1 lead, but they weren't done yet as Rowe crushed a dagger home run to straightaway center to make it a 7-1 advantage.

Sitting on a comfortable cushion, Rolison retired LSU in order in the bottom half of the seventh. Holston came on in relief of Rolison in the eighth and the Rebel pitching train kept on rolling. The sophomore fanned one and retired two on groundouts to enter the ninth with a six-run lead. The Rebels stretch that to eight starting with a Cole Zabowski single to center. Nick Fitzsimmons added the icing on the cake with a monstrous pinch-hit bomb. Holston then closed it out with a one-two-three inning, striking out the final two Tigers to seal the deal on the championship triumph.
 
Quick Hits
- Ole Miss won the SEC Tournament for the third time in program history and the first time since 2006.
- 14,126 were on hand for the Rebel triumph, the second-largest SEC Championship Game crowd in history and the first over 14,000 in 15 years.
- Ole Miss recorded its 20th come-from-behind win this season.
- Rebel hitters leading off an inning went 26-for-48 (.542) in the SEC Tournament, including 6-for-9 in the championship game.
- Nick Fortes is the third player in SEC Tournament Championship Game history to record four or more hits.
- Fortes became the second Rebel to earn SEC Tournament MVP, joining Mark Wright from the 2006
championship team.
- Fortes, Will Golsan and Thomas Dillard were named to the SEC All-Tournament Team.
- Ole Miss starting pitching accumulated a 1.28 ERA over 28.2 innings of work in the SEC Tournament. 

2018 SEC All-Tournament Team
P - John Doxakis, Texas A&M
P - Todd Peterson, LSU
C - Nick Fortes, Ole Miss
DH - Edouard Julien, Auburn
1B - Chris Andritsos, Texas A&M
2B - Michael Helman, Texas A&M
3B - Casey Martin, Arkansas
SS - LT Tolbert, South Carolina
OF - Antoine Duplantis, LSU
OF - Will Golsan, Ole Miss
OF - Thomas Dillard, Ole Miss
OF - Jay Estes, Auburn
MVP - Nick Fortes, Ole Miss

For the latest news and updates involving Ole Miss Baseball, follow the Rebels on Twitter at @OleMissBSB, on Facebook at Ole Miss Baseball and on Instagram at olemissbsb.


 

 

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