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Ole Miss wins series, drops game three to ULM

Ole Miss wins series, drops game three to ULM

OXFORD, Miss. – After taking the first two games of the series against Louisiana-Monroe, the No. 4 Ole Miss baseball squad fell Sunday, 8-3, to the University of Louisiana-Monroe. 

(Click here for box score.)

The Warhawks from the Sunbelt Conference were buoyed by a five-run fourth inning which saw two Ole Miss errors and a number of defensive miscues. For all intents and purposes, Monroe gave the Rebels opportunities to record outs but Ole Miss just wasn’t able to convert a strikeout on a wild pitch and two sacrifice bunts.

ULM added two runs in the fifth and an insurance run in the eighth.

“We didn’t make the play. They coach us to get an out; we couldn’t do that today,” said Rebel centerfielder Justin Bench after the loss. 

Ole Miss’ runs came in familiar fashion in the form of the long ball. Reigning SEC and National Player of the Week Tim Elko powered a “no-doubter” into the “family friendly” session of the outfield to left field.  Elko continues a hot month of March going 7-for-15 this week in four games with 10 RBIs. 

The two-run home run that traveled an estimated 404 feet scored left fielder Kevin Graham. He is equally as hot as Elko, hitting 6-for-14 with two home runs — including the game winner Saturday in game two. 

Freshman phenom shortstop Jacob Gonzalez added his second homer of the season in the fourth inning, but that was all the scoring the Rebs could muster in the final game. 

Sunday starter Derek Diamond suffered the loss, dropping to 1-2 on the season.  The sophomore looked good through the first three innings but ran into trouble in the fourth and was eventually lifted.  

“It just got away from him in the fourth,” head coach Mike Bianco said of Diamond. “I know he’s disappointed, but it’s not all on him. There’s enough blame to spread around.”

Only three of the five runs charged to the Ramona, California native were earned.  

Diamond gave way to Jackson Kimbrell for 1.0 innings, Brandon Johnson for 1 2/3 innings, Tyler Myers for 2 innings and Wes Burton for the full 9th inning.

In evaluating the season so far, Bianco is positive as the Rebs head toward league play next weekend.

Bench shares his head coach’s enthusiasm for SEC action.

We have a great team.  We can swing the bat, we can pitch, we know that.  We’re going to do something special this year.

Justin Bench

Up Next for Ole Miss

The Rebels travel to Louisiana Tech for mid-week action on Tuesday at 6:00 p.m. and Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. The Rebel Walk will be in Ruston to cover the games. 

Then, conference play for Ole Miss begins Friday with the Auburn Tigers coming to Swayze. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Friday night and 1:30 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday. 

 

About The Author

Chris Muller

Chris is our Director of Baseball Content and Senior Baseball Writer. Muller is a 1995 Graduate of Ole Miss. He is a collegiate recreational sports professional currently residing in Arlington Texas with his wife of 24 years, Amber, and German Shorthaired Pointer, Sophie. Chris is an avid Ole Miss Baseball and Football fan. His hobbies include watching college football and baseball and playing poker with his friends.

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