OXFORD, Miss. — The No. 19-ranked Ole Miss baseball team claimed the weekend series against William & Mary with a split of its doubleheader Saturday, Feb. 14, at Swayze Field. The Rebels bounced back with a 16-2 win in Game two after suffering an 8-1 loss in Game one.
“It was disappointing to play poorly in Game 1, but it was encouraging to bounce back like we did in Game 2,” head coach Mike Bianco said.
With the series win, the Rebels (2-1) improve to 11-0-1 in weekend series to open the season under Bianco.
GAME 1 — William & Mary 8, No. 19 Ole Miss 1
Ole Miss dropped its first game of the 2015 season, unable to overcome a six-run fourth in an 8-1 loss to William & Mary in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader.
William & Mary sophomore right-hander Nick Brown (1-0) earned the win, giving up one run on four hits with two walks and a career-high six strikeouts through 6.1 innings.
Senior right-hander Sam Smith (0-1) suffered the loss for the Rebels (1-1), giving up four runs on four hits with three walks and a strikeout in 3.0 innings of work.
Sophomore designated hitter Henri Lartigue, making his second career start, was a bright spot for the Ole Miss offense, going 2-for-3 with two doubles and a run scored. Junior right fielder Cameron Dishon also had a 2-of-3 game with a double for the Rebels.
On the mound, junior right-hander Jacob Waguespack worked 5.0 innings of relief, helping limit the damage in the fourth and giving up just one unearned run on one hit with a walk and two strikeouts in 5.0 innings of relief.
William & Mary (1-1) took a 1-0 lead in the second with an RBI double down the right-field line and threatened to add to its lead in the frame, before Smith pitched out of a bases-loaded jam to limit the damage to one run.
Ole Miss tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the inning, as Lartigue started things off with a standup double down the right-field line and then came around to score on an RBI groundout by senior catcher Austin Knight.
The Tribe went ahead 7-1 after a six-run inning in the fourth, highlighted by a three-run home run to right by sophomore designated hitter Ryder Miconi. Ole Miss threatened in the bottom of the inning and later in the seventh, but they were unable to scratch a run across in either frame, while William & Mary added another insurance run for the 8-1 final.
— Ole Miss Baseball (@OleMissBSB) February 15, 2015
GAME 2 — No. 19 Ole Miss 16, William & Mary 2
The Rebels scored in six different innings, including a seven-run third, as Ole Miss defeated William & Mary 16-2 to cinch the series win on the first weekend of the 2015 season.
The Rebels pounded out 18 hits, their most in a game since the series clincher against Mississippi State last season, April 13, 2014. Ole Miss was led by a trio of sophomores in Colby Bortles, Errol Robinson and J.B. Woodman.
“We knew we were better than we played in the first game [of the doubleheader], Woodman said. “It was definitely good to swing the bats and play well-around in the second game”
Robinson had a career game, going 4-for-5 with two doubles, three runs scored and three RBI.
Woodman capped an impressive first weekend in the leadoff spot, going 3-for-4 with three doubles, two runs scored and an RBI. Bortles went 3-for-5 with two runs scored and five RBI, including a three-run blast in the seventh.
Sophomore right-hander Brady Bramlett (1-0), making his first career weekend start after missing the end of the 2013 season and the entire 2014 season due to injury, picked up the win for the Rebels. Bramlett worked a career-long 6.0 innings, giving up two runs on four hits with no walks and eight strikeouts, one shy of tying another career high. He faced the minimum in four of his six innings of work.
“It was just great to be back and have a good outing after not playing last year,” Bramlett said “When the offense scores as many runs as they did, it’s easy to cruise out there a little bit.”
Ole Miss scored first for the first time this season, taking a 1-0 lead in the first after back-to-back doubles by Woodman and Robinson to lead off the inning.
The Rebels broke things open in the third, batting around and scoring seven runs on eight hits. The frame included seven consecutive hits — six singles as well as a double to right by freshman second baseman Kyle Watson.
Ole Miss scored in the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh innings, including a four-spot in the seventh. Bortles provided the big hit in the seventh, a three-run home run to left for the Rebels’ first homer of the season.