BLOG: The last two times the Diamond Rebels have hosted the No. 1 team in the country they have come away with series victories.
Ole Miss will have two chances to continue the recent trend, beginning with today’s 1:30 p.m. game.
LOOKING BACK: No. 16 Ole Miss scored three in the first on an Alex Yarbrough RBI-single and a Matt Snyder two-run homer and that proved to be enough as the Rebels held on to top No. 1 Florida 3-0. Ole Miss ace Bobby Wahl had arguably the best performance of his collegiate career, striking out six against five baserunners in a career-high eight innings.
Miss the celebration that followed Snyder’s fourth homer of the season? Here’s a neat video of it:
TAKING THE MOUND: Taking the mound for No. 1 Florida will be two-way All-America Brian Johnson.
The junior southpaw is 4-0 on the year with a 3.13 ERA.
Johnson has fared will the two previous times he faced Ole Miss.
In 2010, Johnson allowed one unearned run in 5.1 innings to lead Florida to a 2-1 victory.
Last season, Johnson struck out nine in 6.2 scoreless innings. Florida went on to win the game 7-1.
Ole Miss will send senior right-hander R.J. Hively to face the Gators.
Hively is 3-1 with a 1.47 ERA. In 36.2 innings, Hively has struck out 41 and walked six. Opponents were also hitting just .207 off of him.
No. 1 FLORIDA GATORS (23-3 overall, 5-2 SEC)
CF Daniel Pigott (.301 BA/. 367 OBP/.452)
RF Preston Tucker (.313/.391/.646)
C Mike Zunino (.375/.439/.761)
LHP Brian Johnson (.271/.323/.424)
1B Austin Maddox (.343/.359/.400)
SS Nolan Fontana (.274/.395/.453)
2B Casey Turgeon (.273/.387/.468)
LF Vickash Ramjit (.304/.393/.565)
3B Cody Dent (.167/.359/.167)
LHP Brian Johnson (4-0, 3.13 ERA)
No. 16 OLE MISS REBELS (19-7, 4-3)
LF Tanner Mathis (.347/.488/.389)
2B Alex Yarbrough (.408/.468/592)
1B Matt Snyder (.357/.407/.592)
C Will Allen (.338/.377/.423)
RF Preston Overbey (.311/.382/.459)
3B Andrew Mistone (.235/.309/.318)
CF Auston Bousfield (.258/.352/.301)
DH Zach Kirksey (.323/.420/.815)
SS Blake Newalu (.341/.372/.488)
RHP R.J. Hively (3-1, 1.47)
FLORIDA 1, Ole Miss 0 (T1): Mike Zunino tallied a two-out double to left field and left-hander Brian Johnson brought the All-America catcher home with a single to right field.
OLE MISS 2, Florida 1 (B4): Will Allen put the Rebels ahead 2-1 with a two-run homer over the Ole Miss bullpen. Allen’s first home run of the season scored Matt Snyder, who reached base ahead of Allen via an error by Florida second baseman Casey Turgeon.
FLORIDA 2, Ole Miss 2 (T5): Pigott scored from second on a two-out double to right field by Taylor Gushue to tie the game. After getting ahead 1-2 on Zunino in the previous at-bat, Hively ended up walking the catcher to extend the frame.
OLE MISS 3, Florida 2 (B5): Zach Kirksey led off the frame with a walk, advanced to second on a SAC bunt by Blake Newalu, advanced to third on a groundout by Tanner Mathis and scored on a single through the right side by Alex Yarbrough off of left-handed reliever Steven Rodriguez.
FLORIDA 8, Ole Miss 3 (T8): Dylan Chavez surrendered a single, double, RBI-single and three-run homer to lead off the eighth inning before he was pulled in favor of right-handed freshman Sam Smith. Smith didn’t fare any better and after surrendering a single to Daniel Pigott and an RBI-double to Preston Tucker he was pulled for Tanner Bailey. After Zunino struck out for the first out o the inning, Gushue flew out to right field, scoring Pigott from third.
FLORIDA 9, Ole Miss 3 (T9): Florida added to its lead in the ninth with back-to-back doubles by Vickash Ramjit and Justin Shafer.
Florida 9, OLE MISS 4 (B9): Snyder hit his second home run in as many days into the right field crowd, but that’s all the offense the Rebels were able to muster in the ninth.
Florida reliever Johnny Magliozzi earned the win, recording one out in the seventh.
Chavez was saddled with the loss, allowing four runs on five hits in 1.2 innings.
First pitch on Sunday is set for 12:30 p.m.
Florida will start sophomore right-hander Jonathan Crawford (2-1, 3.95). Ole Miss will counter with Mike Mayers (2-2, 3.22). (March 31, 2012)