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No. 2 Rebels lose, 1-0, to UCF in pitcher’s duel; rubber game set for Sunday

No. 2 Rebels lose, 1-0, to UCF in pitcher’s duel; rubber game set for Sunday

ORLANDO, Fla. – In its first nine games of the season, Ole Miss got used to games being halted early due to the 10-run rule. Saturday, the Rebels got their first taste of extra innings.

It took 12 innings for anyone to score, but it turned out to be the game winner for UCF as the Knights took game two of the series, 1-0.

Riley Wash sent a single up the middle to score Gephry Pena with the game winner for UCF.

Ole Miss falls to 9-1, the Knights improve to 8-3.

It was the first time Ole Miss has been shut out since March 10, 2019, when the Rebels fell to Mississippi State, 2-0. The last 1-0 game for Ole Miss was last March when the Rebels topped Auburn in Oxford.

It was a tough day for us offensively. It was more about what they did, I thought Staine was tremendous. We chased some of the elevated fastballs out of the zone. Part of that was because he was able to throw his breaking ball in the strike zone.

Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco on the Rebels’ offense

John Gaddis threw seven shutout innings for Ole Miss, striking out eight batters. Mason Nichols and Hunter Elliot each threw shutout innings, striking out four. Elliot absorbed the loss to fall to 1-1 on the year.

After offensive explosions were the norm for the Rebels early in the season, offense was hard to find Saturday.

T.J. McCants finally got the Rebels’ first hit in the top of the fifth. But he was erased when Hayden Leatherwood grounded into an inning-ending double play.

In the bottom of the ninth, UCF attempted to get a runner into scoring position, but Rebel catcher Hayden Dunhurst gunned down Pena attempting to steal second and the Rebels were able to retire the side to go to extra innings.

Ole Miss was able to get two runners on base in the tenth when Justin Bench singled and McCants was issued an intentional walk, but they were stranded when Leatherwood bounced out to first to end the threat.

In the 11th, UCF was poised to win the game when the Knights got a runner to second with one out. But Leatherwood made a sliding catch in right field for the second out and was able to throw back to second base to record a double play and continue the game.

That set the stage for the UCF to score the game winner.

McCants, Justin Bench and Kevin Graham had the only Ole Miss hits on the day.

Next Up

The Rebels and UCF conclude the series Sunday at 11 a.m.

(Feature image credit: Josh McCoy, Ole Miss)

Steve Barnes

Steve Barnes

Steve Barnes joins The Rebel Walk staff as a senior writer and brings a trifecta of journalistic experience. As a writer, he has covered college sports for Rivals.com, Football.com and SaturdayDownSouth.com as well as served as a beat writer for various traditional newspapers.

He has been a broadcaster for arena football and several national tournament events for the National Junior College Athletic Association as well as hosting various shows on radio.

A former sports information director at Albany (Ga.) State University and an assistant at Troy and West Florida, he has helped host many NCAA conference, regional and national events, including serving five years on the media committee of the NCAA Division II World Series.

Barnes, a native of Pensacola, Fla., attended Ole Miss in 1983-84, where his first journalism teacher was David Kellum. The duo has come a long way since that time.

He will bring a proven journalistic track record, along with a knack for finding the out-of-the-ordinary story angles to The Rebel Walk.

Barnes continues to reside in Pensacola a mere ten minutes from the beach because he does have taste and a brain.

About The Author

Steve Barnes

Steve Barnes joins The Rebel Walk staff as a senior writer and brings a trifecta of journalistic experience. As a writer, he has covered college sports for Rivals.com, Football.com and SaturdayDownSouth.com as well as served as a beat writer for various traditional newspapers. He has been a broadcaster for arena football and several national tournament events for the National Junior College Athletic Association as well as hosting various shows on radio. A former sports information director at Albany (Ga.) State University and an assistant at Troy and West Florida, he has helped host many NCAA conference, regional and national events, including serving five years on the media committee of the NCAA Division II World Series. Barnes, a native of Pensacola, Fla., attended Ole Miss in 1983-84, where his first journalism teacher was David Kellum. The duo has come a long way since that time. He will bring a proven journalistic track record, along with a knack for finding the out-of-the-ordinary story angles to The Rebel Walk. Barnes continues to reside in Pensacola a mere ten minutes from the beach because he does have taste and a brain.

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