Ole Miss defeats Kentucky, 2-1, on the road in game one
LEXINGTON – (Release) No. 9 Ole Miss (18-7, 3-4 SEC) pulled out a win in a low scoring game one at Kentucky (17-10, 2-5 SEC) Friday night, taking down the Wildcats 2-1 at Kentucky Proud Park.
Starter Dylan DeLucia, making his first career start, came through with a gem of an outing. The junior college transfer pitched 6.1 frames, allowing just three hits and one unearned run. Brandon Johnson picked up the win in relief, retiring all six batters he faced, five via strikeout.
Ole Miss wasted no time getting on the board in the first, with Jacob Gonzalez reaching on a throwing error and coming around on Tim Elko’s RBI single up the middle.
From there, DeLucia held the Wildcats at bay through five scoreless before surrendering the tying run in the sixth. Kentucky took advantage of a DeLucia error, a passed ball, a stolen base and a ground ball to deadlock the game without registering a hit.
With two runners on and one out recorded in the seventh, DeLucia made way for John Gaddis, who aptly collected a pair of outs on a strikeout and fly ball to escape danger and keep the score deadlocked at a run apiece.
The next inning, Johnson came on and in striking out the side, gave the Rebel offense the jolt it needed.
TJ McCants led off the ninth with a triple off the left field wall putting Ole Miss in prime position. Just when back-to-back strikeouts had the opportunity on the verge of being wasted, Hayden Leatherwood clutched up with a sharp single to right, bringing in what ended up being the winning run.
With the lead in two, Johnson collected three outs in the bottom of the ninth to seal the deal, giving Ole Miss the advantage in the series.
Ole Miss and Kentucky will face off again on Saturday at 1 p.m. CT. The game will be streamed live on SEC Network +, with the call being available through the Ole Miss Radio Network.
Evelyn has covered sports for over two decades, beginning her journalism career as a sports writer for a newspaper in Austin, Texas. She attended Texas A&M and majored in English. Evelyn’s love for Ole Miss began when her daughter Katie attended the university on a volleyball scholarship. Evelyn created the Rebel Walk in 2013 and has served as publisher and managing editor since its inception.