No. 11 Rebels Head North to Face Memphis
The Rebels and Tigers already faced each other this season, March 2, with Ole Miss winning 9-7 at Swayze Field.
March 29, 2016

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The Last Meeting
Memphis7
Ole Miss9
March 2, 2016
Oxford, Miss.
Seven-Run Inning Propels No. 13 Ole Miss Past Memphis, 9-7
The No. 13-ranked Ole Miss baseball team rallied from a six-run deficit to score nine unanswered runs and knock off rival Memphis Wednesday afternoon at Swayze Field. The Rebels (7-1) plated seven in the third inning to help secure the 9-7 victory after previously trailing 6-0.

MIDWEEK GAME
Matchup: No. 11 Ole Miss (20-5) at Memphis (9-14)
Date: March 30, 2016
Location: Memphis, Tenn.
Venue: AutoZone Park
Capacity: 14,384
Radio: Ole Miss Radio Network
    David Kellum, play-by-play
    Keith Kessinger, analyst
Live Audio: OleMissSports.com
Series: Ole Miss leads 92-52
Last Game: March 2, 2016
        Ole Miss won 9-7
        Oxford, Miss.

QUICK HITS
- Ole Miss is ranked in the top 15 of every national poll, including No. 11 in USA Today's coaches poll.
- The Rebels are 7-0 in midweek games this year.
- Ole Miss defeated Memphis 9-7 earlier this season at Swayze Field (March 2).
- The Rebels are looking to beat the Tigers twice in one year for the first time since 2008.
- Ole Miss has won the last two games against Memphis at AutoZone Park.
- AutoZone Park is home of the Memphis Redbirds, Triple-A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals.
- Ole Miss ranks second in the SEC and 10th in the country with 16 sacrifice flies.
- The Ole Miss bullpen holds a combined ERA of 2.00, including 0.35 in midweek games.
- The Rebels have scored five-or-more runs in one inning seven times in 2016.
- Sophomore Tate Blackman leads the SEC with 81 fielding assists.
- With 18 career saves, closer Wyatt Short is tied with Scott Bittle for fourth on the Ole Miss all-time saves list.
- Head coach Mike Bianco is one of nine coaches in history to win at least 600 games at an SEC school.

PROBABLE PITCHING MATCHUP
WEDNESDAY, 6:30 P.M.
Memphis - TBA
Ole Miss - James McArthur, Fr., RHP, 3-0, 5.48 ERA
NOTING McARTHUR:
- Won his last three starts
- Struck out a career-high seven hitters in a win over UT Martin (March 22)
- Against UAB (March 16), allowed just one run on five hits to pick up his second victory in as many starts
- Has started five midweek games for Ole Miss
- Earned his first career win, allowing two runs over five innings against Southeast Missouri (March 8)
- Is one of the tallest Rebels on the team, standing 6'7" alongside Sean Johnson

SCOUTING MEMPHIS
Memphis enters the week with a 9-14 record after dropping two-of-three at Southern Illinois over the weekend. The Tigers host Arkansas State Tuesday night before facing the Rebels on Wednesday. Senior outfielder Jake Little leads Memphis with a .345 average at the plate to go along with a team-high eight steals in nine attempts. Fellow outfielder Chris Carrier is hitting .315 and paces the Tigers in runs (24) RBI (18) and doubles (8). On the mound, the Memphis pitching staff holds a 4.68 cumulative ERA. Daron Schoenrock is in his 14th season at the helm of the program.

A TIGHT SERIES
Separated by just 70 miles, Ole Miss and Memphis have played a home-and-home series in each of the past six seasons. In five of those seasons, the series was split with each team earning one victory over the other, providing competitive battles during recent years. Overall, Ole Miss has dominated the all-time series; the two teams have met on the diamond 144 times with the Rebels holding a 92-52 advantage. Mike Bianco is 22-9 against Memphis in 15 years as the Rebels' head coach.

LAST TIME WE MET
The Rebels and Tigers have already squared off on the diamond this season. In a matchup at Swayze Field (March 2), Ole Miss rallied from a six-run deficit to score nine unanswered runs, including seven in the third inning, to knock off Memphis 9-7. At the plate, Ole Miss took advantage when the bases were loaded, plating five runs with the bags full of Rebels. Junior J.B. Woodman led the way, going 2-for-3 with three RBI. On the mound, freshman Andy Pagnozzi pitched effectively out of the bullpen to earn the victory. The young right hander tossed 3.2 innings with only two hits and only one run allowed. Fellow freshman Connor Green also had a solid outing with 1.1 scoreless innings of work. Memphis tallied 11 hits throughout the contest, getting multi-hit games out of Andy Bowman, Chris Carrier and Jake Little. In the field, a pair of errors led to five unearned runs, and freshman pitcher Alex Hicks suffered the loss.   

CAPTAIN CLUTCH
One of three team captains, J.B. Woodman has shown his leadership ability by being a clutch hitter all season long. The junior is hitting .436 with runners on base, including a remarkable .545 with runners in scoring position. Both averages lead the Ole Miss Rebels. With a runner on third and less than two outs, Woodman has knocked the runner in six out of eight opportunities. He also posts a .647 rate of advancing runners on base, another team best.

MIDWEEK SUCCESS
Ole Miss is 7-0 in midweek games this season. The Rebels have won games over Arkansas State, Memphis and UT Martin, while also sweeping both Southeast Missouri and UAB in a pair of midweek contests. Ole Miss has outscored the opposition a combined 50-20 in midweek matchups, averaging over seven runs per game. As has been the case throughout the entire season, major credit goes to the bullpen. In midweek games this season, the Rebel bullpen has allowed just one earned run in 25.2 innings, boasting a 0.35 ERA.

RELIABLE LONG RELIEF
Against No. 10 South Carolina over the weekend, Ole Miss relied upon a trio of Rebels to throw long relief outings. David Parkinson, Brady Feigl and Wyatt Short all stepped up to put together quality outings in career-long appearances. Parkinson tossed 4.1 innings Thursday night, allowing just one run on five hits. On Friday, Feigl struck out a career-high six in 3.2 innings out of the bullpen. Wrapping up the series, Short entered Saturday's game in the fourth inning, earlier than his usual closing role. Nonetheless, the junior southpaw delivered with 5.2 innings of one-hit baseball. Short's stellar performance marked the longest outing by a Rebel reliever since Scott Weathersby pitched 6.0 scoreless extra innings in a 16-inning win over No. 1 Vanderbilt, April 10, 2015.

SEC GRIND
Traditionally known as the best conference in college baseball, the SEC has once again lived up to that expectation again this season with over half of the conference ranked in the nation's top 25. The Rebels have fared well in the nation's toughest conference over the years. Ole Miss has posted a .500-or-better SEC record in 12 of the last 15 seasons. To put that in terms of difficulty, the Rebels are just one-of-two SEC schools that have accomplished the feat. South Carolina has been .500-or-better in the SEC in 14 of the last 15 years.

BRINGING THE RELIEF
The Ole Miss bullpen has been a reliable force throughout the start of the 2016 campaign. As a group, the staff boasts a 7-0 record to go along with an SEC-best eight saves and a combined 2.00 ERA in relief appearances. Four Rebel relievers have a sub-1.00 ERA, including closer Wyatt Short, who ranks second in the SEC with five saves on the season. Sophomore Will Stokes adds a pair of saves to go along with a 1.69 ERA. Freshman Dallas Woolfolk has made eight relief appearances without allowing an earned run and also has a save to his credit. David Parkinson has made a team-high 11 appearances out of the `pen, boasting an impressive 1.53 ERA. Coming off Tommy John surgery, redshirt-freshman Brady Feigl is 2-0 with a 2.93 ERA in eight appearances. The excellent relief pitching has helped the Rebels get off to a 20-5 start.

OLE MISS IN THE POLLS
Despite the setback to No. 10 South Carolina over the weekend Ole Miss remained in the top 15 in every national poll, including its highest ranking of No. 11 in the USA Today coaches poll. Baseball America, D1Baseball and the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) all ranked the Rebels 13th, while Collegiate Baseball and Perfect Game placed Ole Miss at No. 14 in their respective national polls.

STATISTICALLY SPEAKING
Through the first six weeks of the season, Ole Miss ranks in the top 25 nationally in several statistical categories.

Stat   National Rank SEC Rank
Sacrifice Flies   16 10th 3rd
W/L Percentage 0.800 12th 5th
Strikeout-to-Walk Ratio 2.93 18th 5th
ERA 2.73 19th 5th
Walks      120 20th 4th

Individually, junior J.B. Woodman is fifth in the nation with five sacrifice flies, while classmate Colby Bortles has 11 doubles to rank 14th among sluggers. Ole Miss ace Brady Bramlett boasts an impressive strikeout rate, ranking sixth with an average of 13.06 strikeouts per nine innings.
    
BLACKMAN'S BAT
Throughout the spring and fall, there was talk about the improvement of Tate Blackman. After going through a difficult freshman season, the Altamonte Springs, Florida native was determined to prove that his 2015 preseason expectations (a preseason freshman All-American before he even took the field in an Ole Miss uniform) were more than just hype. Putting in the time to get better during the offseason, Blackman's hard work has paid off thus far in 2016. Blackman is tied for the team lead in hits (28) and multi-hit games (9). The second baseman also ranks second among Rebels in batting average (.341) and runs scored (21).

BIG INNINGS
Ole Miss has put together big innings throughout the 2016 campaign. Seven times this season, the Rebels have scored at least five runs in an inning. Ole Miss scored a season-high nine runs in the first inning versus FIU. Against Memphis, the Rebs used a seven-run third inning to rally from an early 6-0 deficit. At the Chanticleer Classic, six runs in the second helped Ole Miss roll to a 7-1 win over Cincinnati. The Rebels had two five-run innings to cruise past Grambling in a weekend sweep. Last week, a pair of five-run fifth innings helped Ole Miss down UAB 5-1 (March 16), as well as Tennessee, 10-7 (March 20).

STRIKING FIRST
Ole Miss wastes no time striking first, outscoring the opposition 33-10 in the first inning. The Rebels have scored in the opening frame 12 times this season, posting an 11-1 record in those ballgames. The Rebels tallied 13 runs in the first inning on opening weekend, including nine in the series finale. The fast start gave the Rebels momentum in each game, helping lead to the series sweep of FIU. In the series opener versus No. 2 Louisville, junior J.B. Woodman belted a two-run homer to right field in the first, giving Ole Miss the early lead that it kept throughout the contest to hand the top-ranked Cardinals their first loss of the season. Facing another ranked team in No. 18 Coastal Carolina, the Rebels tallied three runs in the first inning to cruise to an 8-2 win on the road. In the series finale at Tennessee, Ole Miss scored twice in the opening frame en route to a series-clinching victory.

BRAMLETT ELECTED TO HALL OF FAME, WHO'S WHO HONOREE
While on the road with the team (March 4), starting pitcher Brady Bramlett received some major recognition on campus. A redshirt-junior on the field but a senior academically, Bramlett was named to the 2015-16 University of Mississippi Hall of Fame. The Bartlett, Tennessee native was one of 10 seniors throughout the entire university that earned the honor. He was also just the first student-athlete elected into the university's hall of fame since Maggie McFerrin of women's basketball (2013). Bramlett was selected based on his academic achievement, community service and potential for future success. He represents the SEC and serves as the Vice-Chair of the NCAA National Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and is a representative on the NCAA Strategic Vision and Planning Committee, a subcommittee of the NCAA Division I Council. Bramlett is also a representative on the NCAA Minority Opportunities and Interests Committee. Bramlett's busy schedule off the field includes serving as president of the Ole Miss SAAC, singing in the university choir and working towards his degree as a biological science major. He also donates his time to the community, going to local elementary schools as part of the Reading with the Rebels program. Along with his hall of fame induction, Bramlett was also chosen to represent Ole Miss on the 2015-16 Who's Who among Students in American Universities and Colleges.

HOME FIELD ADVANTAGE
Swayze Field provides the best atmosphere and some of the biggest crowds across the country for college baseball games. Rebel Nation has taken advantage of the nice weather to come out to the ballpark in full force to see Ole Miss Baseball open the 2016 season. The Rebels have averaged 8,414 fans per game, including four contests with the attendance over 10,000, to rank second nationally. In total, 143,035 fans have watched Ole Miss Baseball at Swayze Field this season. The third-largest combined attendance for a three-game home series (28,659) watched the Rebels take two-of-three from No. 2 Louisville. On Saturday, the fourth-largest crowd in Swayze Field history (10,561) saw the Rebels battle the Cardinals. Attendance on opening day was 10,129, the sixth-largest in stadium history and the biggest opening day crowd in school history. More than 10,000 fans watched the Rebels win game two against FIU, and the three-game series attendance totaled 26,910 (8,970 average). That mark set an opening series record and also ranks seventh for three-game series attendance at Ole Miss.

BIANCO EARNS 700TH CAREER VICTORY
Head coach Mike Bianco, the winningest coach in Ole Miss Baseball history, collected his 700th career victory March 4 as Ole Miss cruised to a 15-2 win over Grambling. The win was also Bianco's 600th as head coach of the Rebels. With the milestone victory, Bianco became just the ninth coach in NCAA Baseball history to earn at least 600 wins at an SEC school. Ole Miss has reached the 30-win plateau in each of Bianco's previous 15 seasons, proving that the Rebels reload their roster, not rebuild. With 13 postseason appearances in 15 years, five Super Regional appearances over the last 11 years and a College World Series appearance in 2014, Ole Miss has continued to rank among the nation's elite each season under Bianco. This season, the Rebels are off to a fast start, winning 15 of their first 16 games for the third time in school history and second under Bianco.

ON DECK
Following the midweek matchup with Memphis, Ole Miss will head to Starkville, Mississippi to face No. 5 Mississippi State in a weekend SEC series (April 1-3). The in-state rivalry begins Friday night at 6:30 p.m. from Dudy Noble Field. The series concludes Saturday and Sunday with a pair of afternoon matchups set for 2 p.m. and 1 p.m., respectively. All three games will be broadcast on SECN+.
 

 

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