Clock strikes midnight in 9th:Ole Miss 8 UK 7

HOOVER, Ala. -- It wasn't as late as Kentucky's first game, but again the Wildcats began play on one day and finished on another, this time with a dramatic loss to the Ole Miss Rebels. Michael Guerrero hit a one-out, two-run line drive home run over the left-field wall in the bottom of the 9th to give the Rebels the dramatic come-from-behind 8-7 victory.

With four lead changes in the last three innings, the SEC tournament saved the best game for last Thursday night as the # 8 seed Ole Miss Rebels defeated the # 4 seed Kentucky Wildcats 8-7.

The game featured a rematch of a ballgame six days ago involving the same two teams, and the same two starting pitchers, left-handers James Paxton for Kentucky and Drew Pomeranz for Ole Miss. In that contest, Paxton threw a complete game shutout as the Wildcats clinched a berth in the SEC tournament, and Pomeranz was knocked out after only 3.1 innings of play. Today the roles were somewhat reversed, as Paxton struggled with his control, walking five in 3.1 innings before being pulled in favor of Tommy Warner. Pomeranz fared slightly better, throwing 4.2 innings, giving up five hits and three runs.

Paxton only lasted 3.1 innings this time

Tommy Warner relieved Paxton

The Rebels jumped on top of the Wildcats tonight, and led 3-0 after three complete innings. The Cats tied the game with three runs in the top half of the 4th, with the big blow being shortstop Chris Wade's two-rbi double.

Wade smacks a double down left field line

Brock Baber came on in relief of Warner, and threw a career-high four innings.

Brock Baber

The Wildcats scattered their hits throughout the lineup tonight, with each starter getting one hit except Ryan Wilkes, and with only Troy Frazier getting more than one hit (2-4). Their hits were timely, however.

Keenan Wiley drove in Troy Frazier with this 6th inning single, tying the game at 4-4.

Wiley delivers

First baseman Brian Spear delivered an RBI single in the top half of the 7th inning, scoring Collin Cowgill with the go-ahead run and putting UK on top 5-4.

Spear lines an rbi single

Frazier reached on an error to open the 8th inning, and scooted around to score on an infield grounder to the first baseman by Wiley to tie the game after Ole Miss had briefly retaken the lead with a two-run home run in the bottom of the 7th. The score stood 6-5 Wildcats heading into the 9th inning.

Andrew Albers, Kentucky's ace reliever for most of the season, came on in relief of Baber with two outs in the 8th inning. Alberts retired the Rebels, but after giving up a first pitch single in the 9th, was removed in favor of Scott Green.

Andrew Albers

Moving to the top of the 9th inning, the game was all square at 6-6. National player of the year candidate Sawyer Carroll led off the 9th inning with a towering shot in the right-center field gap over the right fielder's shoulder, and he strolled around to third base without a play.

Carroll slugged a leadoff triple

With no outs and a runner on third base, Collin Cowgill stepped to the plate and delivered a fly ball to right field that scored Carroll.

The sacrifice gave Kentucky a 7-6 lead heading into the 9th inning. Albers lasted one pitch into the 9th, giving up a line single by Logan Power. The stage was set for UK reliever Scott Green, who came in throwing mid-90's fastballs. After striking out cleanup hitter Cody Overbeck on three pitches, Green tossed up a gopher ball to Guerrero, who lined the shot down the left field line, just fair, with the two-run, game-winning home run.

Scott Green was throwing hard

The hitting stars for Ole Miss were Guerrero, with two hits including the two RBI game-winning home run, and Matt Smith, who was also 2-4 with a solo home run.

The heart-breaking defeat causes Kentucky to return to action Friday night at 6:30 p.m. to face the Alabama Crimson Tide, winners over nationally ranked (# 6) Georgia today in an elimination contest. The Cats have defeated Alabama all four times they have faced each other in 2008.

Kentucky will pitch senior starter Greg Dombrowski (5-0, 3.67 ERA) against Alabama's right-hander Robert Farris (2-3, 6.35 ERA). The game will begin at approximately 6:30 p.m. CT.

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