OMAHA, Neb. – The Rebels got big, timely hits from the middle of the lineup Thursday night as Sikes Orvis and Will Allen combined to go 6-for-10 with five RBI and lead No. 4 Ole Miss (48-20) to a 6-4 win over No. 2 TCU (48-18) in an elimination game at the College World Series.
With the win, the Rebels advance to face No.1 Virginia at 7 p.m. Friday night on ESPN in an elimination game. Should Ole Miss win, it will force a deciding game on Saturday as the two teams play again for a spot in the national championship series.
The 48 wins ties the school record for wins in a season set by the 2005 club.
Josh Laxer (3-2) picked up the win in relief, working 2.2 innings and allowing one run on one hit with a walk and three strikeouts. The only hit allowed by Laxer was a solo home run from Kevin Cron in the fifth inning. Aaron Greenwood picked up his fifth save, working the final 1.1 innings to close out the game.
Jordan Kipper (8-3) took the loss for the Horned Frogs, allowing two runs on three hits with three walks and four strikeouts in 2.2 innings of relief work.
"First, congrats to TCU and Coach Schossnagle, for a tremendous year, it was a great baseball game,” said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. “We’re fortunate we got some timely hits and that’s what this comes down to. Getting good hits with runners on, and we were able to do that on the other side of the ball, and we made our pitches to get out of the innings. I’m proud of our guys. I was asked a couple days ago in a press conference about our offense and I thought we had a good offensive day today. The guys, sitting next to me, Sikes Orvis and Will Allen certainly led the charge. I thought we had some better at-bats today and it shows you when wind is not blowing in 20 miles an hour it a little different here. We were able to barrel some ball up and get some hits today.”
"This off season we really worked hard, just on and off the field on being tough,” said senior captain Will Allen. “It’s something that team has taken to just the mindset of 1-9 throughout the lineup. We have guys that can step up and be the hero on any given day. It’s something with the team when our backs are against the wall, we play really good baseball. We’re just a tough team, a very confident team, and we’ve continued to do it throughout the whole season."
Ole Miss got on the board in the third inning, taking advantage of a leadoff double to shallow center from J.B. Woodman. A sac bunt to the third base side of the mound from Austin Knight moved Woodman to third before Braxton Lee drove him home with a single up the middle. Auston Bousfield was then hit by a pitch to put two men on and cause TCU to call for a meeting at the mound.
Austin Anderson then flew out to put two away before Will Allen drove a double to the wall in right center to score both Lee and Bousfield, putting Ole Miss on top 3-0 after the top of the third.
TCU responded in the fourth inning, using a leadoff single to left center from Kevin Cron to start a rally. A walk of Jerrick Suiter in the next at bat put two men on before the Rebels would get a fielder’s choice to throw Suiter out at second and put men at the corners with one away.
Boomer White then hit a double down the left field line to bring Cron home and leave two men in scoring position as the Horned Frogs cut the lead to 3-1. A walk of Dylan Fitzgerald then loaded the bases for TCU and brought shortstop Keaton Jones to the plate.
Jones drew a walk, the third of the inning, to bring a second run home and keep the bases loaded for catcher Kyle Bacak. Ole Miss then turned to its bullpen for right-hander Josh Laxer.
The Rebel reliever got a strikeout to put two away before a walk of leadoff hitter Cody Jones tied the game at three and again kept the bases loaded for the Horned Frogs. Laxer got a fly ball deep to right center that Woodman tracked down at the wall for the final out to keep TCU from taking the lead as the inning ended with the score tied 3-3.
Orvis came up with a big two-out hit in the fifth inning to put the Rebels back on top. After Bousfield and Anderson reached on back-to-back walks to put men on, TCU got a strikeout to put two away. The Rebel first baseman then pulled a single through the right side to score Bousfield from second and put Ole Miss back in front 4-3.
The lead was erased in the first at bat of the TCU half of the fifth when Cron took the first pitch and sent it into the stands in left field to tie the game 4-4.
Ole Miss moved back in front in the seventh with an RBI single from Allen that put the Rebels up 5-4. Bousfield was hit by a pitch to start the frame before Anderson delivered a single to left to put two on with Allen at the plate. The senior then drove the ball back up the middle to score Bousfield and give the Rebels the lead for the third time on the night.
TCU again put together an answering rally in the eighth, using a leadoff walk and a sac bunt to put Suiter in scoring position. The Rebels then intentionally walked Boomer White to put two men on and set up a double play opportunity. Freshman Wyatt Short got a strikeout of Fitzgerald to put two away and Ole Miss again turned to its bullpen, this time for right-hander Aaron Greenwood.
A double steal put both runners in scoring position before Greenwood got a ground ball up the middle from the Frog batter. Shortstop Errol Robinson charged in and to his left, scooping the ball behind the mound and making the throw to end the inning and keep Ole Miss on top 5-4 after eight innings of play. Orvis again came up with a big hit for the Rebels in the ninth, driving a two-out double down the line in left to score Will Allen and put Ole Miss on top 6-4. Allen reached on a single to left in the previous at bat to keep the inning alive for the Orvis hit.
Greenwood then shut the Horned Frogs down in the ninth, retiring the side in order to preserve the win and keep Ole Miss alive in the College World Series.
On the transition as new hitting coach: The transition has been really good. The coaching staff has made it a lot easier on me than what it could be. It's definitely been a whirlwind. On what he knew about Ole... read more
UPDATE: Tuesday at 1:30 p.m.Here are more of Coach Freeze's interviews in Bristol. Scroll down to the earlier post to hear him on Ivan Maisel's podcast. Listen: Freeze on the Paul Finebaum Show Listen: Freeze on the Freddie Coleman ShowListen:... read more
All 14 Southeastern Conference football coaches will travel to ESPN's annual mid-summer football coaches "car wash" - in which guests appear across multiple programs and platforms over one day - at ESPN's Bristol, Conn., headquarters on Monday and Tuesday. Ole... read more
Ole Miss took its turn at the annual SEC Media Days on Thursday. Joining head coach Hugh Freeze was senior quarterback Bo Wallace, junior defensive end C.J. Johnson and senior safety Cody Prewitt. Here are a few related SEC Media... read more
Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze said on day one that his expectations were to make the program relevant in the Southeastern Conference Western Division. With a full allotment of 85 scholarship players and more depth of both sides of... read more
Once overshadowed, Wallace now finds himself more firmly in the spotlight after the departure of seven of the league's eight top passers. The dean of SEC quarterbacks, Wallace is the league's leading returner in total offense, passing yards and passing... read more
Before taking his turn at the podium in the main room at SEC Media Days on Thursday, head coach Hugh Freeze met with members of the Ole Miss local media and addressed a wide variety of topics. Here are some... read more
Ole Miss will take its turn at SEC Media Days on Thursday. Here are a few links to stories of interest for Ole Miss fans from Day Three of SEC Media Days, which featured Steve Shaw (SEC), Justin Connolly (ESPN),... read more
Ole Miss will take its turn at SEC Media Days on Thursday. Here are a few links to stories of interest for Ole Miss fans from Day Two of SEC Media Days, which featured South Carolina, Mississippi State, Texas A&M... read more
NFL.com CFB 24/7 has counted down the 14 college football players to watch -- and some other college football topics -- in varying categories in 2014. Below are the highlights for Ole Miss and the link to the complete 14... read more
Ole Miss will take its turn at SEC Media Days on Thursday. Here are a few links to stories of interest for Ole Miss fans from Day 1 of SEC Media Days, which featured SEC commissioner Mike Slive, Auburn, Florida... read more
Former Ole Miss player Zack Cozart, now a member of the Cincinnati Reds, was named the best defensive shortstop in baseball for the first half of the 2014 season. ESPN Insider Scott Spratt selected one player from either league at... read more
The Season: Ole Miss Baseball: Omaha Bound from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo. Chapter 1: Regionals from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo. Chapter 2: Super Regionals from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo. Chapter 3: CWS Games 1 & 2... read more
Three student-athletes and the head coach of each of the 14 Southeastern Conference football programs will participate in SEC Football Media Days, July 14-17, at the Hyatt Regency Birmingham - The Wynfrey Hotel in Hoover, Ala.Ole Miss will take its... read more