Impressive Start

Sophomore left-hander Drew Pomeranz got his first complete-game win as a Rebel Friday night as Ole Miss beat Florida 6-2 in Gainesville.

Pomeranz struck out a career-high nine and only allowed four hits with two earned runs and three walks.

"I was really locked in today and I was hitting my spots," Pomeranz said. "I was coming off a bad start and I wanted to go out and show what I could do and go right at them."

"Drew was dominant all night," said senior catcher Kyle Henson, who caught the first seven innings of Pomeranz's nine. "All he did was fill up the zone and throw strikes and let the defense play."

Ole Miss, improving to 27-10 overall and 10-6 in Southeastern Conference action, jumped on Gator starter Jeff Barfield with three runs in the top of the first inning before Pomeranz ever took the mound. Back to back walks to lead off the inning by Jordan Henry and Logan Power proved costly for the junior right-hander as Matt Smith's double to the right-center gap scored both. Michael Hubbard singled to get Smith home, and the Rebel offense had certainly set the tone.

Pomeranz (4-1) showed he was appreciative by striking out the side in the bottom of the first.

Florida, now 25-13 on the season and 9-7 in SEC play, got its first run in the bottom of the second, however. Josh Adams led off with a walk, and Buddy Monroe doubled him home to cut the UM lead to 3-1.

In the top of the third, a two-out error on the Gator shortstop opened the door for another Rebel run as Matt Smith reached. After Smith moved to second on a wild pitch, Zach Miller got a base hit to get Smith home to make it 4-1.

The Gators trimmed that deficit to 4-2 in the bottom of the fourth and appeared headed for more runs. A leadoff double followed by back to back singles got a run home and set up what appeared to be a big inning for the home team.

A popup to short was the first out, and a Tim Ferguson to Kyle Henson play at the plate was the second out. Another strikeout by Pomeranz got the Rebels out of it, leading 4-2 after four complete.

Amazingly Florida would not get another hit off Pomeranz in the contest.

Smith doubled to score Power who had doubled as the Rebels got the run back in the top of the fifth to lead 5-2.

A leadoff solo home run in the eighth by Henson, his third of the season, gave Ole Miss a 6-2 lead, and that would be the final score.

After Pomeranz allowed a one-out walk in the top of the fifth, not a Gator reached base again until the a two-out walk in the ninth.

Ole Miss got 11 hits off four Gator pitchers. The starter Barfield (2-1) got the loss.

Florida had not lost an SEC game at home this year, sweeping both Tennessee and Alabama prior to this weekend.

"Drew was tremendous," said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco of Pomeranz. "He was just really dominant tonight. I'm proud of him. Proud of the way he commanded from the first inning to the ninth inning. It looked like he could have gone a few more."

The good news for the Rebels was that he went as many as he did. Now all the other arms are fresh and available for the next two games.

Ole Miss and Florida play at 3 p.m. CT Saturday.

Junior RHP Phillip Irwin (5-2, 3.44) will take the mound for the Rebels, while senior LHP Stephen Locke (1-0, 2.60) is scheduled to start for the Gators.


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