Miami wins round two with a shutout

Ole Miss couldn't build on its 11-9 game one win in the 2006 Oxford Super Regional. Miami jumped on the Rebels early and cruised to a solid 7-0 victory. Game Three, with the winner going to the College World Series, is set for 6 p.m. Monday in Oxford.

Mike Bianco said after the second game of the 2006 Oxford Super Regional that momentum is more inner game than game to game. If the first two games in this series are any indication, he's absolutely correct.

Ole Miss scored eight unanswered runs in game one to win 11-9. That should have given the Rebels a lot of "mo" headed into day two. But game to game scenarios can be completely different, and Miami came out blazing from the get-go to set the tone in this one.

"Tough night for us, and a good night for them," Bianco said after the Hurricanes blanked the Rebs 7-0. "That's the bottom line. We've talked all week about playing well. Tonight we didn't play well. Tonight they just outplayed us, outhit us, outpitched us. They were just too good tonight. Disappointing, but the good news is we get to come back tomorrow and play another baseball game."

Rebel starter LHP Brett Bukvich, who got the loss to fall to 6-6 on the season, said he didn't have his best night.

"I was leaving too many balls up in the zone," said Bukvich, who went three and two-thirds innings allowing six earned runs on nine hits with four strikeouts and a walk before giving way to Cody Satterwhite who finished the game. "I worked hard in the bullpen (before the game) trying to keep the ball down. Everytime I left it up (in the game) they put good swings on it and connected on it."

Especially leadoff hitter Jemile Weeks. The freshman second base sensation for the Hurricanes, who was 3-for-4 in the game with two home runs and five RBI, did as much damage to the Rebels and Bukvich as anyone on this night.

"He swung the bat real well tonight," Bukvich said. "He's a real good hitter, and you just can't make mistakes like that on him. On the first (home run to Weeks) I threw him a fast ball with a 1-0 count. The other (home run to Weeks) I missed my spot. It was supposed to be outside and I left it out over the plate about belt high and he put a good swing on it."

Bukvich said it obviously hurt the team's cause to fall behind 4-0 after two innings.

"It was on me," he said. "When (Weeks) hit the leadoff home run and then they added to it (in the first two innings), that was big for them."

Bianco said junior right-hander Danny Gil kept the Rebel bats at bay.

"Gil, who has been predominantly a reliever, starts and really mixes his pitches well," he said of Gil who went six innings allowing four hits but no runs. "He threw a lot of offspeed into the strike zone. He kept us offbalance and pitched out of a couple of jams."

"It's not really that much differnt than coming out of the bullpen," said Gil, with only three previous stars but with 34 appearances this season. "The main change is I know I will have to pitch more (when starting). So I spend a little more time in the bullpen trying to stay warm and ready. That's really it."

The Hurricanes got their second run of the game on another home run, this time a leadoff solo shot by leftfielder Dennis Raben. Unlike the first inning, this time the Canes followed it up with a couple of singles by DH Gus Melandez and first baseman Yonder Alonso. After an out, Roger Tomas bunted safely to load the bases.

Up came Weeks again, and this time he delivered with a two RBI single to right field.

"I just saw the ball well tonight," Weeks said. "I just saw everything I liked. They were throwing me things I wanted. Once we got the lead in the first, I just kept wanting to get timely hits."

The Hurricanes kept hitting - 12 of them in the game to be exact - while the Rebels struggled to hit and had just five of them in the contest.

Ole Miss' best chance to score appeared to be in the fourth when the bases were loaded with one out. But a double play ended the threat. The Rebels had men on second and third with two outs in the fifth but a strikeout ended things.

Jon McLean relieved Gil to start the seventh. That the first batter he faced was Mark Wright brought back thoughts of game one. In the opener, Wright sent a three-run home run out of the park to tie the game 9-9 as the first batter that reliever McLean faced. In game two, McLean won the battle this time as Wright flew out to center field.

McLean went two innings and didn't allow a baserunner. Chris Perez finished up things on the night for the Canes and allowed just a hit before ending it.

"We were able to get some timely hits and hold Ole Miss to only five hits," said Miami head coach Jim Morris. "They are one of the top hitting teams in the country. I thought Danny Gil pitched a great game."

Bianco said Ole Miss simply has to come back and play better in Monday's 6 p.m. game.

"Tomorrow we have to play better," he said. "Getting to Omaha is not easy. You're going to play somebody good. The fact is they won't fold; you have to beat 'em. And tonight we didn't beat 'em."

Ole Miss will send freshman LHP Lance Lynn (7-3 record, 4.57 ERA) to the mound, while the Hurricanes will counter with sophomore LHP Manny Miguelez (8-4, 4.01). Miguelez has the most starts (18) and the best ERA (4.01) on the Miami staff.

Rebel team captain Justin Henry said there won't need to be much said to his teammates about the importance of the game.

"Game three of a Super Regional to get to Omaha," he said. "If you can't get up for that just being that, then you shouldn't be out on the field. We all know what's at stake."

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