On a night when Arkansas head coach Dave Van Horn had seen enough by the second inning, Ole Miss did some yard work to even this weekend’s series.
Cameron Dishon and Colby Bortles - whose brother Blake is an NFL quarterback - both slammed home runs as the Rebels down the Razorbacks 5-4 Friday night before 3,379 fans at Baum Stadium.
Arkansas’ Andrew Benintendi launched a two-run blast deep over the right field wall - his team leading seventh of the season - to cut it to 5-4 in the seventh.
But the Razorbacks (13-13, 2-6) - who won Thursday’s series opener 10-3 - could get no closer to the Rebels (14-13, 4-4) on a night when both teams had nine hits.
“We cut the lead down to one and still have no outs in what I think was the seventh,” Van Horn said. “We just needed to get something going again. After that we just really couldn’t get a hit.
“We had a couple of runners on here and there and not much happened. The game slowed down the last two to three innings. They had some runners on, too, and didn’t get them in late in the game.
“I know we stranded 10 (actually 11) guys on, we struck out too many times and we swung at bad pitches. That’s what I saw. We were going out of the zone chasing balls up.”
It was three walks given up by Arkansas starting pitcher Trey Killian (0-2) in a three-run Ole Miss second that got Van Horn incensed.
He was tossed by home plate umpire Ron Healey for arguing balls and strikes, but got his money’s worth while yelling at the stone-faced ump who never said a word.
“There were some really tight pitches that it just seemed like one time it was (a strike) and one time it wasn’t,” Van Horn said. “It was very confusing to say the least.”
It was a contentious game as there was a lot of chatter throughout, one player ejection, a couple of bench warnings and Razorback pitching coach Dave Jorn taking over for Van Horn.
“I just felt like Trey had to throw too many pitches,” Van Horn said. “There was a lot of chit chat going on from their dugout in the top of the first and not much really happened.
“There were some different opinions. Give credit to Ole Miss, they got a couple of big hits when they worked the counts and Trey had to lay it in there a little bit and they got a couple of big hits to take a 3-0 lead.
“But on the other hand, I thought our team battled back and played hard and played good defense and just left too many runners out on base.”
Arkansas first baseman Clark Eagan was the player tossed when he picked up his bat in the fifth and drew a line in the batter’s box to illustrate his displeasure with the strike zone.
NCAA rules state that a player who is ejected is suspended from the next game, but Van Horn wasn’t sure of that after the game.
“I am not sure what the situation is there,” Van Horn said. “I am going to have to look at it. They have changed the rule two or three times the last few years.
“Obviously if you are in a fight situation and you get ejected (you are suspended), but if he is out, he’s out.”
Dishon - who was 3 for 3 on the night - delivered an RBI single and Will Golsan drove home two to put Ole Miss up 3-0.
Arkansas got one back in the bottom of the second as Michael Bernal - who failed twice to get down a sacrifice bunt - ripped an RBI single. He did so to center field on an 0-2 pitch off Ole Miss starter and winner Brady Bramlett (4-1) to make it 3-1.
Dishon then blasted his homer in the fourth to push Ole Miss ahead 4-1.
Joe Serrano cut Arkansas’ deficit to 4-2 with an RBI single in the bottom of the frame.
But Bortles then blasted a Killian pitch out for a 5-2 lead in what would be the presumed Arkansas ace’s last inning of work.
Killian went five innings while allowing five runs on six hits, fanning four and tying a career-high with four walks.
Three Arkansas relievers - Josh Alberius, Jacob Stone and Lance Phillips - pitched four innings of scoreless relief.
“The pitching has been good all week for the most part,” Van Horn said. “We have played four games now in four days and we have had a chance to win every game.
“We have won two of them, lost two, couple of one-run games and probably the main reason is our pitching has had a good week.”
Van Horn was not sure after the game who would take the mound for the Razorbacks on Saturday.
“I’m not sure who we are going to throw tomorrow,” Van Horn said. “I am going to talk to Coach Jorn and we might even make that decision tomorrow, but I am sure it will be a couple or three different guys.
“Guys will be on pitch counts because that is kind of where we are at because we do have a couple of our pitchers who are sick right now. I don’t even know if they will be ready to pitch. We sent a couple of guys home early today.”
Carson Shaddy tags Kyle Watson and gets an out call at the plate.
Ole Miss 5, Arkansas 4
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