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Win or Go Home: Rebels Fall To Arkansas 3-2, Will Face Hogs in Elimination Game Thursday

by | Jun 22, 2022 | Baseball, Omaha | 0 comments

OMAHA – With Ole Miss needing just one win to make it to the College World Series final, a challenging offensive night would prove to be the Rebels’ downfall, as Arkansas would force an elimination game with a 3-2 win.

(Click here for box score.)

HOGS STRIKE FIRST

In the top of the second inning, Chris Lanzilli led of the inning with a solo home run that just did clear the fence in left center to give Arkansas a 1-0 lead.

The blast marked the first time Ole Miss had trailed in a game since the seventh inning against Miami in the Coral Gables regional.

Gaddis would then walk Brady Slavens on four pitches but induce a high pop out from Zack Gregory to leave him stranded and end the frame.

REBELS ANSWER

With the Hogs leading 1-0, Kemp Alderman led off the bottom of the second for the Rebels, and in no time the game was tied at one.

Garrett Wood would draw a two-out walk, but the Rebels would get nothing more after Calvin Harris struck out to end the inning.

ALL-SEC DEFENSE SHINES AGAIN

Jacob Gonzalez has been a smooth operator all season for Ole Miss on the infield, and in the top of the fourth, he made a spectacular play to get Robert Moore at first base and keep the Hogs from having a baserunner.

PITCHERS SETLLE IN

After each team scored a run in the second, a pitcher’s duel started to take shape. John Gaddis was able to work around a hit in the third and got the Hogs 1-2-3 in the fourth.

As for the Rebels, Hagen Smith baffled them with a nasty slider that they struggled to lay off. By the end of the fourth inning, he had already racked up eight strikeouts and had allowed just two hits.

HOGS BACK ON TOP

Arkansas wouldn’t allow the pitcher’s duel to last very long. Brady Slavens led off the Arkansas fifth, and absolutely crushed a home run to dead center to give the Razorbacks a 2-1 lead. The bomb was 436 feet, the longest so far at the 2022 College World Series.

The Rebels would get another baserunner in their half of the fifth with a Jacob Gonzalez two-out walk, but Tim Elko would just miss a pitch and fly out to right field to end the frame.

That would end the night for John Gaddis, who would be replaced by Jack Washburn. Gaddis would have a final line of 5 innings, four hits, two runs, four strikeouts and two walks on 81 pitches.

Jack Washburn would do his job in the sixth, getting two strikeouts and a fly out, with a walk in between, to keep the score 2-1. That would end the day for Arkansas starter Hagen Smith, who would give way to Evan Taylor.

BATS ASLEEP

The Rebels just couldn’t get anything going against the Razorbacks through the seventh. They had managed just three hits, two of those from Alderman, and one run. And between the two Arkansas hurlers, the Rebels had struck out 11 times through seven.

INSURANCE FOR THE RAZORBACKS

In the top of the eighth, Cayden Wallace hit a scorcher down the left field line that got through the arms of Garrett Wood. Wallace stretched it into a double on a close play where he appeared to be out after replay review, but the call was upheld as safe.

Coach Mike Bianco talked about what he saw on the play.

That’s why they have replay. We saw the board and that’s why we challenged it. We thought he tagged possibly the finger but again, they’ve got I think 22 cameras and they see different views than we do so I don’t think it’s fair for me to comment on a call. They’re doing a great job out there, this is about as smooth as you can do with instant replay.

Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco on the play at second

Michael Turner would then rip an RBI single past Gonzalez to make it 3-1, Arkansas. Turner would be followed by an infield single from Lanzilli to put two Hogs on base with no outs.

Robert Moore would then execute a sacrifice bunt to move both runners into scoring position with one out. Jalen Battles would then be intentionally walked to try and put the double play back in order.

Jack Dougherty would then show some nerves of steel, getting Brady Slavens and pinch hitter Kendall Diggs to strike out to leave the bases loaded.

But unfortunately for Dougherty, the bats would go silent as the Rebels went 1-2-3 in the eighth, keeping the deficit at two runs.

Dougherty would shut the Razorbacks down yet again in the top of the ninth, getting them in order to give his offense a chance to keep the game going or win in the bottom half.

The Rebels would load the bases in the ninth inning with nobody out, but would be unable to get more than one run and the Hogs took the victory, 3-2.

UP NEXT

The two teams will square off one more time for the right to make it to the CWS final at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday. Ole Miss will start Dylan DeLucia in the win-or-go-home contest. Arkansas will start ace Conner Noland. The game will air on ESPN2.

Austin Eldridge
Austin Eldridge

Austin has more than ten years in sports media, including sports talk radio, play-by-play broadcasting and journalism. He has followed Ole Miss athletics for his entire life and has covered the Rebels and the rest of the SEC while working in the Memphis media market. Outside of sports media, Austin is a musician and outdoorsman. Before a serious accident forced him to be medically discharged, he was a multi-media journalist with the Mississippi National Guard.

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