Tide evens up series with Rebels

Published 12:15 am Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Rebels fought back, but came up short in the rally as Ole Miss fell to Alabama 7-5 on Saturday at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field.

The two teams will play the deciding game of the series at 1:30 p.m. today, as the Rebels (15-5, 1-1 SEC) won the first game of the series, 4-0, on Friday night.

David Goforth (0-3) suffered the loss for the Rebels on Saturday, allowing four runs — three of them earned — on six hits with three walks and four strikeouts in 51⁄3 innings of work.

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Adam Morgan (3-1) picked up the win for the Crimson Tide (12-7, 1-1 SEC) as he allowed five runs — four earned — on five hits with two walks and six strikeouts. Jonathan Smart grabbed his second save of the year, holding the Rebels off the board in the final inning after entering the game with two men in scoring position and no outs in the ninth.

“Today just wasn’t a good day for us overall,” Ole Miss coach Mike Bianco said. “We did not have a good day on the mound, and were not able to get hits with guys on third base and less than two outs. That is what we are going to have to do to be successful moving forward. It was good to see our guys have an answer for their big inning by having one of our own. Not being able to fully capitalize on our chances in the later innings hurt us.”

Vanderbilt 4, Mississippi State 0

Mississippi State’s offensive struggles continued Saturday afternoon as the Bulldogs were shut out for a second straight day, falling to Vanderbilt in Nashville.

After being held to four hits in a 10-0 series-opening loss Friday night, the Bulldogs managed only three hits as the Commodores clinched the weekend series.

Vanderbilt left-hander Grayson Garvin (3-1) dominated the Bulldog lineup. Garvin allowed two hits and two walks, with six strikeouts, in seven innings of work. Garvin faced six batters more than the minimum.

MSU starting pitcher Chris Stratton (3-1) pitched well. The sophomore right-hander scattered 11 hits and allowed four runs (all earned) in 62⁄3 innings of work.

Southern Miss 4, Rhode Island 3

It took 15 innings, but Southern Miss kept its winning streak alive on Saturday in Charleston, S.C.

Isaac Rodriguez’s RBI double in the top of the 15th gave the Golden Eagles (14-3) the lead and closer Collin Cargill finished off the Rams (8-7) in the bottom of the inning.

With two outs in the final frame, Ashley Graeter singled through the left side to get the rally going. Rodriguez, who also drove home a run on a groundout back in the fifth, then laced a Bobby Dean pitch into centerfield.

Graeter raced around from first and the throw in from the outfield was in time to get Graeter. But the catcher, Milan Adams, dropped the throw which allowed what proved to be the winning run to score.

Cargill worked a season-high 71⁄3 innings, striking out six.

USM faces Connecticut at 9 a.m. in Charleston.

Tulane 7, UNO 4

Jeremy Schaffer delivered two RBIs for the 22nd-ranked Green Wave and Kyle McKenzie tossed six innings in the start on the mound to help the Olive and Blue extend their winning streak to five games.

Vicksburg native Bowen Woodson had two hits for Tulane (15-4), while former Hinds Community College standout Nick Schneeberger extended his hit streak to five games.

Delta State 16-8, Ark. Monticello 5-1

Delta State (14-9, 2-0 GSC) swept the University of Arkansas-Monticello (9-10, 0-2 GSC) 16-5 and 8-1 in the Gulf South Conference West Division opening weekend. DSU starters Aaron Newcomb and Brandon Hardin combined to strike out 17 Boll Weevils

Florida 1, LSU

Behind a combined shutout from sophomore Hudson Randall and juniors Greg Larson and Nick Maronde, No. 1 Florida (17-2, 2-0 SEC) edged No. 5 LSU (16-3, 0-2 SEC).

The victory enabled the Gators to clinch just their second-ever series triumph in Baton Rouge and it was the first time the Tigers had been held scoreless in the new Alex Box Stadium. UF’s seventh-straight win came as a result of its fourth shutout of the campaign, exceeding the three that the Gator pitching staff threw in 64 games last season.

Randall (3-0) scattered eight singles over 62⁄3 innings and was followed to the mound by Larson and Maronde, who collected his first save. Freshman Kevin Gausman (2-1) was the tough-luck loser after permitting five hits and one run over eight innings.

Junior Daniel Pigott drove in the lone run in the first inning with a double.