No. 8 Ole Miss Faces No. 18 Southern Miss for Second Time in Eight Days
April 12, 2016

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The Last Meeting
Ole Miss6
Southern Miss2
April 5, 2016
Pearl, Miss.
Fast Start Propels No. 14 Ole Miss Past Southern Miss, 6-2
Scoring all six runs in the first four innings, No. 14 Ole Miss remained perfect in midweek games with a 6-2 win over Southern Miss Tuesday night at Trustmark Park. Behind six scoreless innings from freshman starter James McArthur, the Rebels (22-7) improved to 8-0 in midweek contests this season.

MIDWEEK GAME
Matchup: No. 8 Ole Miss (25-7) vs. No. 18 Southern Miss (25-8)
Date: April 13, 2016
Location: Oxford, Miss.
Venue: Swayze Field
Capacity: 10,323
Television: SEC Network+
    Richard Cross, play-by-play
    David Dellucci, analyst
Radio: Ole Miss Radio Network
    David Kellum, play-by-play
    Keith Kessinger, analyst
Live Audio: OleMissSports.com
Series: Ole Miss leads 72-49
Last Game: April 5, 2016
        Ole Miss won 6-2
        Pearl, Miss.

PROMOTIONS
Wednesday, April 13, 6:30 p.m.
80s and 90s Night: Celebrate these decades in style! The first 600 fans will receive 80's/90's-themed T-shirts
Kids Night! Kids 12 and under get in FREE
$1 Hot Dog Night

QUICK HITS
- Ole Miss is ranked fourth in the RPI and as high as No. 8 in the national polls.
- The Rebels are 8-0 in midweek games in 2016.
- Ole Miss will face No. 18 Southern Miss for the second time in eight days.
- The Rebels scored six runs in the first four innings to beat the Golden Eagles 6-2 in Pearl, Miss. (April 5).
- Ole Miss is 7-6 versus ranked teams this season.
- The Rebels are riding a five-game winning streak after sweeping No. 21 Arkansas over the weekend.
- Errol Robinson has recorded five straight multi-hit games.
- The Rebels have swept four three-game series against ranked teams over the past four seasons.
- Henri Lartigue leads all SEC catchers with a .365 batting average.
- Ole Miss is outscoring opponents 38-15 in the first inning of games and holds a 14-2 record when scoring in the opening frame.
- Tate Blackman has reached base in 18 consecutive games.
- J.B. Woodman is hitting .500 (15-for-30) with runners in scoring position.

PROBABLE PITCHING MATCHUP
WednesDAY, 6:30 P.M.
Southern Miss - Stevie Powers, Fr., LHP, 0-0, 2.51 ERA
Ole Miss - James McArthur, Fr., RHP, 4-0, 4.28 ERA
NOTING McARTHUR:
- Won his last four starts
- Pitched six scoreless innings to earn the win over Southern Miss last week (April 5)
- Has started six midweek games for Ole Miss
- Struck out a career-high seven hitters in a win over UT Martin (March 22)
- 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 SOUTHERN MISS
The Golden Eagles enter Wednesday's in-state matchup after winning six of their last seven games, including a three-game sweep of Middle Tennessee over the weekend. Their only loss during that stretch came at the hands of Ole Miss last week. Southern Miss is an impressive team offensively, ranking 12th nationally with a .322 team batting average. Nick Dawson is hitting at a .393 clip, while Tim Lynch paces USM in hits (50) and RBI (40). The Golden Eagles have belted 40 home runs this season, which is the sixth-most in the nation. Dylan Burdeaux has hit seven of those home runs, tallying 31 RBI as well. On the mound, Southern Miss will hand the ball to freshman left hander Stevie Powers. In seven appearances totaling 14.1 innings, Powers boasts a 2.51 ERA. He has two starts under his belt with the other five appearances coming out of the bullpen. The Golden Eagles are led by eighth-year head coach Scott Berry.

WE MEET AGAIN
The Rebels and Golden Eagles have been meeting on the diamond since 1916, and the teams will face off for the 122nd time on Wednesday. Ole Miss leads the all-time series, 72-49, including a victory eight days ago. Scoring all six runs in the first four innings, Ole Miss remained perfect in midweek games with a 6-2 win over Southern Miss at Trustmark Park in Pearl, Mississippi. Behind six scoreless innings from freshman starter James McArthur, the Rebels improved to 8-0 in midweek contests this season. McArthur allowed just four hits and struck out five to earn his fourth straight victory in as many starts. The six innings of work was a career high for the tall right hander as he kept the team with the nation's ninth-best batting average off the scoreboard. Ole Miss tallied 11 hits throughout the night behind multi-hit games from four Rebels. Freshman Ryan Olenek led the way, going 3-for-4 with two RBI and one run. Connor Cloyd, Errol Robinson and J.B. Woodman also recorded two hits apiece, with Cloyd knocking in a pair of runs. The Rebels went 6-for-14 with two outs and with runners on base.

ANOTHER RANKED FOE
When No. 18 Southern Miss comes to town Wednesday, the Rebels will face their sixth different ranked opponent this season. Ole Miss is 7-6 versus ranked teams, including series victories over then-No. 2 Louisville and then-No. 21 Arkansas. The Rebels also topped then-No. 5 Mississippi State and then-No. 18 Coastal Carolina in games earlier this year.

STRINGING TOGETHER INNINGS
Last week against Southern Miss, the Rebels scored in the first four innings to take a 6-0 lead before claiming a four-run win. It was the second time this season Ole Miss put together four consecutive scoring innings, matching the series opener versus Grambling State (March 11). The Rebels also scored runs in three straight innings in games versus No. 18 Coastal Carolina (March 5) and GSU (March 13), as well as in a pair of contests against No. 21 Arkansas (April 8-9).

MCARTHUR IN THE MIDDLE
Freshman James McArthur has been the Rebels' primary midweek starter, and after getting settled in, the tall right hander has found success. In his last four starts on the mound, McArthur is a perfect 4-0 with a 2.14 ERA. The New Braunfels, Texas native has struck out 23 and walked just three over 21.0 innings during that stretch. His most recent outing was the best of his young Ole Miss career. Facing one of the nation's top offensive teams in Southern Miss, McArthur tossed a career-high six shutout innings to lead Ole Miss to another midweek victory.

MIDWEEK SUCCESS
Ole Miss is 8-0 in midweek games for the third time in program history, also accomplishing the feats in 2007 and 2010. 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. With a win over in-state foe Southern Miss last week, the Rebels kept their streak alive. Ole Miss has outscored the opposition a combined 56-22 in midweek matchups, averaging 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 two earned runs in 28.2 innings, boasting a 0.63 ERA.

SWEEPING THE HOGS
After beating in-state rivals Mississippi State and Southern Miss in back-to-back games, Ole Miss continued its winning ways with a three-game sweep of No. 21 Arkansas at Swayze Field. Behind seven scoreless innings and a career-high 12 strikeouts by ace Brady Bramlett, the Rebels cruised to a 7-3 victory in the series opener. In game two, the Rebel bats exploded to plate14 runs, the most scored by Ole Miss in an SEC game since April 26, 2014, an 18-5 win at Kentucky. Ole Miss recorded seven doubles throughout the night and went 7-for-18 with runners in scoring position. Closing out the series, the Rebels held off the pesky Razorbacks 8-7 to complete the three-game sweep. It was the first sweep of Arkansas since 2009, including the first ever over the Razorbacks at Swayze Field. Arkansas became the fourth ranked team that Ole Miss has swept in three games throughout the past four seasons.

DOUBLE MACHINE
Junior Colby Bortles has blasted 14 doubles thus far in 2016, six more than his nearest teammate. His 14 doubles rank second among SEC sluggers as well as 17th nationally. The Oviedo, Florida native is five doubles away from cracking the Ole Miss single season top 10 list. He needs 11 more to break the single season record, currently 24 held by Brad Henderson (1999) and Will Allen (2014).

WINNING STREAK NOTABLES
The Rebels have won their past five games in large part to success at the plate. During the streak, Ole Miss is averaging 8.6 runs and 12 hits per game, recording double digits in hits in every contest. Henri Lartigue has led the way with team highs in batting average (.526), runs (7), hits (10), doubles (3) and RBI (7) over the five-game stretch. Errol Robinson has starting swinging a hot bat to the tune of five consecutive multi-hit games, and freshman Ryan Olenek has provided a spark as well, going 8-for-18 (.444) with six runs.

HERE COMES HENRI
The tradition of great catchers at Ole Miss is well known, especially over recent history. Stuart Turner was a Johnny Bench Award winner and Will Allen was an All-American. Last year, Austin Knight threw out 17 baserunners. This season, another Rebel catcher is making his presence known. After spending most of last season as the team's designated hitter or backup catcher, junior Henri Lartigue has taken the reigns behind the plate in 2016. The Southaven, Mississippi native is one of the team's leaders at the plate. In fact, his .365 batting average ranks 10th in the SEC and leads all conference catchers. Moreover, Lartigue is raking during conference play, hitting at a .413 clip. He has put together six games with at least three hits, pacing the Rebel bats.

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 .451 with runners on base, including a remarkable .500 (15-of-30) with runners in scoring position. Both averages lead the Ole Miss Rebels. With a runner on third and less than two outs, Woodman has scored the runner in eight out of 10 opportunities. He also posts a .641 rate of advancing runners on base, another team best.

OLE MISS IN THE POLLS
With a perfect 4-0 week, the Rebels moved up in almost every national poll. Baseball American pushed Ole Miss into the top 10 at No. 8. The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA), Perfect Game and the USA Today coaches poll tabbed the Rebels at 11th in the country. Meanwhile, D1Baseball.com moved Ole Miss to the No. 13 spot, while Collegiate Baseball kept the Rebels at No. 15. With an impressive record and strength of schedule, Ole Miss is fourth in the RPI.
    
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 (38) and multi-hit games (22), while ranking second in RBI (26) and third in runs scored (24). The second baseman has reached base in each of the last 18 games, a season best by any Rebel.

STATISTICALLY SPEAKING
Ole Miss ranks in the top 25 nationally in several statistical categories. Individually, junior J.B. Woodman is fourth in the nation with six sacrifice flies, while Brady Bramlett ranks 16th averaging 12.25 strikeouts per nine innings. With a team-high 14 doubles, Colby Bortles sits at 17th nationally.  

Stat National Rank SEC Rank
W/L Percentage 0.781      7th 3rd
Sacrifice Flies 19 16th  4th
ERA  3.04 21st 4th
Strikeout-to-Walk Ratio       
2.72 22nd 6th


BIG INNINGS
Ole Miss has put together big innings throughout the 2016 campaign. Eight 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. A pair of five-run fifth innings helped Ole Miss down UAB 5-1 (March 16), as well as Tennessee, 10-7 (March 20). With six runs in the bottom of the eighth (April 9), the Rebels held off No. 21 Arkansas before claiming the weekend sweep with a win on Sunday.

STRIKING FIRST
Ole Miss wastes no time striking first, outscoring the opposition 38-15 in the first inning. The Rebels have scored in the opening frame 16 times this season, posting a 14-2 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. A run in the first also helped the Rebels knock off No. 5 Mississippi State.

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 8,495 fans per game, including four contests with the attendance over 10,000, to rank second nationally. In total, 169,893 fans have watched Ole Miss Baseball at Swayze Field this season, also the second-most in the country. Both marks are on pace to break program season attendance records.
    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.

MLB REBELS
The 2016 Major League Baseball season is now underway, and six former Rebels earned spots on big league ballclubs: Aaron Barrett (Washington Nationals), Chris Coghlan (Oakland Athletics), Zack Cozart (Cincinnati Reds), Lance Lynn (St. Louis Cardinals), Drew Pomeranz (San Diego Padres) and Seth Smith (Seattle Mariners). Cozart began the season with the Reds' first hit (a leadoff double) and first run of the season as part of a 3-for-4 game Monday. While they are certainly not new to the big leagues, Coghlan and Pomeranz find themselves on new teams for the 2016 campaign. Barrett and Lynn continue rehab from Tommy John surgery as the two MLB Rebels look to return to the diamond. Although he was optioned to Triple-A to start the season, former Rebel David Goforth made the Milwaukee Brewers' 40-man roster and could hear his name called up at any point during the year.

ON DECK
After the midweek game against Southern Miss, the Rebels will begin a streak of playing eight games over a 10-day stretch. It all starts when Ole Miss travels to Alabama for a weekend series against the Crimson Tide (April 15-17). All three games will be broadcast on SECN+ and can also be heard on the Ole Miss IMG Sports Network. The Rebels will then head to Memphis (April 19) and host Murray State (April 20) in a pair of midweek contests. The busy stretch ends with a weekend series at Swayze Field versus SEC West foe Auburn (April 22-24).


 

 

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