Strong Start

Christian Trent lost his first collegiate game last week when the Rebels dropped the opener 6-4 at No. 1 LSU. Friday night at home in Ole Miss’ 4-1 win against No. 1 Florida, Trent was his old self again.

Trent allowed one run on three hits with three strikeouts and a walk. The Louisiana native said everything wasn’t working, however.

“Slider was terrible. But fastball and changeup were fine,” he said after he moved to 4-1 this season. “I don’t think I threw the slider for a strike.”

But the Gators had trouble hitting him. After J.B. Woodman gave Ole Miss a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning on a home run to right field, Trent cruised, followed by 2.2 innings for a save by Scott Weathersby.

“It was huge to get on top of a team that good,” Trent said. “I feel like the whole game changes when you put it on them early and get the crowd into it. That was a good way to start the game.”

Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco was impressed with the way Trent pitched against the powerful Gators.

“I thought he was outstanding and by far his best outing of the year,” Bianco said. “He didn’t have his slider today, but I thought he really located his fastball on both sides of the plate and had a really good changeup. When he got in that jam like in the fifth, he was able to get out of it.”

Weathersby only allowed one hit and nothing else. He was nearly flawless on the mound in getting his second save of the season.

“He’s normally pretty good,” Bianco said. “You look back and he’s given up two home runs. Besides that, he’s been pretty clean. He’s been pretty impressive.”

Bianco said Weathersby has really turned into a go-to reliever for the Rebels.

“Not a better guy that I know of when you’ve got two-plus innings left and you’ve got a three-run lead," Bianco said. “He’s a guy that’s going to make it difficult on them and he does. He throws the ball on both sides of the plate and throws the breaking ball in there. He makes it tough on the other team.”

Ole Miss picked up two more runs in the sixth inning as Austin Knight singled in Tate Blackman who had singled and Errol Robinson who had reached on an error.

“I wasn’t really looking for any particular pitch,” Knight said. “I was just looking for something to put in play. I wasn’t sitting fastball or slider or anything. Just something out over the plate to put in play and hopefully make something happen. It worked out. It was a good feeling.”

Freshman Will Golsan was the only Rebel with multiple hits. He had two.

Florida scored a run in the seventh after Trent allowed a single and a RBI double. That’s when Weathersby came in to take things home.

“I think this is the best we’ve played,” Bianco said after his team moved to 12-9 overall and 2-2 in Southeastern Conference play. “We just moved better tonight. We were aggressive in the field making plays. At the plate we swung against a really good pitching staff. We didn’t get a lot of results with only six hits. But we looked more like ourselves tonight.”

Knight said he could sense Trent was ready to get back out on the mound and back to winning again after his loss last week at LSU.

“He seemed a little bit more motivated to get out there and give us a good outing,” Knight said. “He was just competing. He’s a competitor out there. He’s going to pitch in and out, and he’s going to make those hitters work to get on base. Very proud of how he stepped up tonight.”

Gator starter Logan Shore, who lasted only 3.2 innings, got the loss. His team fell to 19-4 overall and 2-2 in SEC play.

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