(BLOG) It’s a sunny day in Oxford, Miss., that greets the Ole Miss Rebels (1-0 overall) and Wright State Raiders (0-1) of Dayton, Ohio., for Game 2 of their three game series today at Oxford-University Stadium. First pitch is set for 1:30 p.m.Yesterday was an interesting day for the Rebels to say the least. After surrendering three runs in the top of the first inning, the Rebels responded by plating seven runs in the bottom of the inning and in doing so chased Casey Henn, the Horizon League’s Preseason Pitcher of the Year.
“You got to like it, after giving up three unearned in the first, to get through it like we did,” Ole Miss coach Mike Bianco said.
Matt Crouse earned the win for Ole Miss, surrendering five runs (two earned) in 6.0 innings while walking none and striking out three.
Senior Eric Callender earned the save, allowing just one run on seven hits in 3.0 innings.
STANDOUT FRESHMAN: The player that stepped up on opening day was freshman Preston Overbey. The Jackson, Tenn., native went 2-for-4 with three RBIs and two runs scored in his debut. He also made several slick plays in the field and finished with two putouts and two assists.
LOOKING AT GOFORTH: While Friday’s win was good for Ole Miss, today’s game will go a long way to determining how the weekends to come will go.
Junior right-hander David Goforth had a difficult season a year ago, but according to the Ole Miss coaching staff he has had a solid preseason to earn the role of No. 2 starter. He also added a cut-fastball, a pitch Bianco likened to that of New York Yankee closer Mariano Rivera.
Goforth finished last season with a 1-6 record and a 9.43 ERA in 22 appearances (11 starts). He struck out 43 and walked 38 in 56.1 innings and opponents hit .370 off of him.
—STARTING LINEUPS —
WRIGHT STATE RAIDERS (0-1 overall)
LF Dan Marsh
2B Sam Picchiotti
3B Jake Hibberd
RF Tristan Moore
C Corey Davis
DH Kyle Mossbarger
CF Ryan Ashe
SS Justin Kopale
1B Kody Krizman
LHP Cody Kopilchack (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
OLE MISS REBELS (1-0 overall)
LF Tanner Mathis
2B Alex Yarbrough
RF Matt Smith
CF Jordan King
3B Preston Overbey
1B Miles Hamblin
C Taylor Hightower
SS Blake Morgan
RHP David Goforth (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
—SCORING SUMMARY —
BOTTOM 2: 0-2: Freshman Preston Overbey belted the team’s second home run of the season, sending a pitch from Wright State left-hander Cody Kopilchack into the Rebels’ bullpen. Center fielder Jordan King led off the frame with a walk and scored on the homer.
BOTTOM 7: 0-4: Matt Tracy, pinch hitting for King, breaks Ole Miss’ scoreless streak in the bottom of the seventh by hitting a chopper through the right side of the drawn-in Wright State infield, scoring Matt Smith from third base. Three at-bats later Taylor Hightower added to Ole Miss’ lead, scoring Tracy on a double hit to left-center field.
TOP 8: 4-4: With David Goforth out of the game, Wright State got on the scoreboard in the top of the eighth, scoring one run on two hits and a walk off of relief pitcher Brett Huber. Jake Morgan entered the game with runners on the corners and was unable to get Ole Miss out of the jam, allowing another three runs to score on a single and a double.
BOTTOM 10: 4-5: One frame after making a run-saving play by fielding a chopper and throwing home to gun a runner, sophomore second baseman Alex Yarbrough came through in the bottom of the 10th, hitting a walk-off single to the outfield that scored pinch runner Eric Sauls.
Morgan picked up the win for Ole Miss, allowing one unearned run off four hits in 2.2 innings in relief while striking out two.
Wright State relief pitcher Taylor Braun was tagged with the loss, surrendering two runs in 3.0 innings.
First pitch for Game 3 on Sunday is set for 1:30 p.m.
Transfer Austin Wright is scheduled to start for Ole Miss. Senior right-hander Michael Woytek will get the start for the Raiders. (February 19, 2011)