Ole Miss baseball defeats Arkansas State, 2-1
In the final game of a seven-game homestand, the Ole Miss baseball team defeated Arkansas State, 2-1.
The Arkansas State Red Wolves were coming off an impressive weekend that saw them take two of three games from Louisville. Louisville was ranked as high as No 7 in some polls. After winning the first two games, Arkansas State was up 8-1 over Louisville before letting the game slip away.
Needless to say, the Red Wolves have been hot, and they arrived at Swayze looking to continue their winning ways. As the game started, the Arkansas State dugout was loud and looking to get on the Rebels early.
The first inning appeared to be going the Red Wolves’ way, as they loaded the bases with one out; however, they could only score one run on the Rebels. This was the only run Arkansas State would muster on this blustery day. Ole Miss pitchers Evan Anderson, Jacob Waguespack and Will Stokes held the opponents scoreless for the rest of the game.
Sikes Orvis evened the score during the bottom of the first inning with a missile into the right field bullpen. The game would remain tied at one until the bottom of the fourth when Austin Knight delivered a two-out single that plated Sikes Orvis. This gave the Rebel pitching all the support they needed, and they finished the game with a 2-1 win.
Rebel Players of the Game
Pitching – Evan Anderson came out in the first and struggled to make it through the initial inning. After a strikeout, a HBP and two walks, the lefty got the dreaded visit to the mound from the skipper. It was fairly obvious what Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco was saying. Though we cannot be sure, Bianco appeared to tell the sophomore southpaw something along the lines of, “You got yourself into this mess and we need you to limit the damages and figure out how to get yourself out of it.”
Whatever the specifics of the message, Bianco’s advice was well-received as Anderson got out of the inning and only gave up one run. He pitched the next four innings and allowed just one hit and gave up zero walks.
Jacob Waguespack followed Anderson and pitched three innings, only scattering a couple of singles. Will Stokes came in and got his first save as a Rebel. He pitched the final inning and did not give up a hit.
Hitting – Sikes Orvis provided the spark against the Red Wolves, going 2-for-4 with 1 RBI and 1 run scored. He hit a home run in the bottom of the first that tied the game. He also scored the go-ahead run in the 4th that proved to be the game winner.
Austin Knight provided two hits, as well, including the game-winning RBI.
Defensive Player of the Game – Colby Bortles was tested numerous times and made every play. He successfully made multiple types of plays, including fielding two bunts and throwing strikes across the diamond.
This was a complete win for the Rebels as they closed their first homestand of the season.
Next Up: The Rebels head to Orlando, Florida to take on nationally-ranked University of Central Florida. First pitch is slated for Friday, February 27 at 5:30 pm, CST.