Ole Miss Rallies to Top Vanderbilt 10-9

Oxford, Miss. - The 11th-ranked Ole Miss Rebels rallied from a 9-1 deficit to defeat the Vanderbilt Commodores 10-9 in 10 innings Sunday, April 7, at Swayze Field. The win was the Rebels 10 consecutive victory and improved their record to 25-7 overall and 8-4 in the Southeastern Conference. The Commodores lost for the eighth time in their nine games to fall to 14-12 overall and 3-7 in the league. The win also gave Ole Miss the three-game series sweep.

Vanderbilt built a 9-1 lead heading into the bottom of the ninth only to see Ole Miss fight back. The Rebels scored three times in the eighth, five times in the ninth to force extra innings and won the game in the 10th inning. It marked Vanderbilt's first loss in 14 games this season when it led after the sixth inning.

Ole Miss cut the Vanderbilt lead to 9-4 in the eighth inning highlighted by a two-RBI triple by designated hitter Josh Christian. A passed by from VU catcher Scott Vanderhoff earlier in the inning allowed third baseman Clint Farrar to score.

The Rebels completed the rally in the ninth, scoring five times. The tying runs came in dramatic fashion when shortstop Chad Sterbens hit a game-tying three-run home run to left-center field off Commodore reliever Steven Faulkner (2-3). Earlier in the inning, pinch hitter Jonathan Swearingen drew a walk and later scored on an RBI-double by center fielder Burney Hutchinson. First baseman Bryce Morrison followed two batters later with a sacrifice fly to center field that scored Farrar.

Ole Miss won it in the 10th when Faulkner hit Hutchinson with an errant pitch with the bases loaded to force in Swearingen from third base.

Farrar led all hitters with a 3-for-3 day at the plate. He had one RBI and two runs scored. Sterbens was 2-for-4 with three RBI and two runs scored.

Lost in the defeat was an outstanding pitching performance from right-hander Chris Maultsby. A reliever most of the season, the senior made his first start against a SEC foe and threw 7.2 innings of seven-hit baseball. He allowed four earned runs and four walks to go along with three strike outs. He retired 14 of 16 Ole Miss batters from the third inning through the seventh inning.

The Rebels roughed up left-hander John Scott who relieved Maultsby. Scott allowed four earned runs and two walks in the eighth inning. Faulkner, VU's third pitcher, was credited with allowing two earned runs, two walks and two hits.

Vanderbilt never trailed in the game until the 10th inning. The Commodores took an early 1-0 lead in the first inning when center fielder Karl Nonemaker reached on an error by Farrar at third base. Nonemaker scored when he stole third base and came home on the same play when Farrar misplayed the throw from Rebel catcher Charlie Waite.

The Commodores added two more runs in the fourth on a RBI single by second baseman Chris Broadus and a successful double steal that saw designated hitter John Prothro steal home as Broadus swiped second base.

Vanderbilt's top hitter on the day though was left fielder John Kaye. The junior hit a solo home run over the wall in right field to put the Commodores up 4-1 in the sixth. An inning later his two-RBI double to left-center field highlighted a four-run inning that placed Vanderbilt ahead 9-1.

Nonemaker, Broadus and shortstop Tony Mansolino each had two hits on the day for the Commodores.

Ole Miss reliever Al Simontis (4-0) pitched the final 2.1 innings without allowing a hit to register the win.

The Commodores complete their current five-game road trip Teusday at Austin Peay. Game time is set for 6:30 p.m. Vanderbilt plays host to the highly ranked South Carolina Gamecocks this weekend at Hawkins Field.

Commodores Daily Top Stories