PEARL - Just when it looked like the Ole Miss baseball team was coming around with four straight wins, up popped a game like Tuesday night.
But it was just one game. That's the hope anyway.
The Rebels allowed 13 free passes either by walk (six), hit batter (three), or error (four) while also giving up 12 hits. Southern Mississippi won going away 13-6.
"We just didn't give ourselves a shot defensively or on the mound," said a disappointed Rebel head coach Mike Bianco, whose team fell to 17-12 on the season. "We just had no rhythm, no control of the game. We fell behind too many hitters. We magnified the hitters by not catching the ball defensively. But we haven't been that bad all year (defensively), not that bad in I can't remember when."
The Rebels, before 5,282 fans, used five pitchers in the contest - starter Will Kline, Tommy Baumgardner, Jesse Simpson, Stoney Stone, and Garrett White.
Starter Will Kline went two and two-thirds innings, allowing eight runs, two earned, on five hits with two walks and two strikeouts.
Tommy Baumgardner went an inning and allowed two earned runs on two hits with a strikeout and two walks.
Jesse Simpson came in and pitched three innings, allowing one run but none earned on two hits with two walks and three strikeouts.
Stoney Stone only pitched a third of an inning, allowing two earned runs on three hits. Garrett White finished things up going an inning with a strikeout.
Rebel captain Justin Henry said it was an ugly game for Ole Miss.
"We didn't play well tonight," Henry said. "But I don't think we ever thought it was over. Not the way we've been swinging the bats lately. We just made some mistakes that kept us from getting it done tonight. We'd make a mistake and they'd jump on us."
The Golden Eagles got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the second inning, scoring three runs. Michael Ewing got USM on the board with a solo home run to right field. After an out, a throwing error given to Zack Cozart allowed Kevin Coker to reach. After another out, Brian Dozier doubled to score Coker. A Bailey Hartel single to center scored Dozier. A ground out by leadoff batter Luke Adkins finally ended things with USM up 3-0.
But the Rebels came right back in the top of the third to tie things back up. Justin Henry laid down a short bunt toward third that USM catcher Coker's throw to first was just a bit late. With two outs, Chris Coghlan walked followed by a two RBI triple by Cozart. Alex Presley doubled to score Cozart, and Mark Wright struck out looking to end the top of the third with things standing 3-3.
But USM would score five runs in the bottom of the third as starter Kline got chased after three runs had scored off a single, two walks, and an error on Rebel third baseman Chris Coghlan. After Tommy Baumgardner replaced Kline, the Golden Eagles got two more runs after a walk loaded the bases and a single by Hartel drove in two runs. Adkins popped up to Coghlan in foul territory to end it.
The Rebels got one back in the top of the fourth and had a shot to get more but couldn't. A C.J. Ketchum two-out single scored Logan Power who had reached on a one-out single. The bases were loaded with two outs when USM took starter Barry Bowden out and replaced him with Brad Owen, who got Cozart to pop up to the third baseman to end it.
Southern added two more runs in the bottom of the fourth to end the night for Baumgardner. Jesse Simpson came in to take Baumgardner's place with two outs and after walking one batter got Hartel to fly out to left to end it.
At 10-4 all the Rebels could do was try to rally. After adding a run in the fifth, they made it 10-6 in the top of the seventh when Alex Presley singled home Chris Coghlan who had doubled.
But the Eagles added another in the bottom of the seventh and two more in the eighth for the final count.
Kline (0-2) got the loss. USM reliever Owen (3-0) got the win.
Rebs' 4-game win streak snapped by USM
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