OMAHA, Neb. — The weather extended Ole Miss’ stay at the College World Series another day. Virginia made sure the Rebels didn’t hang around any longer.
The Cavaliers ended Ole Miss’ run in Omaha with a 4-1 win Saturday afternoon at TD Ameritrade Park. The Rebels (48-21) won a pair of elimination games to earn another matchup with Virginia (52-14), which beat Ole Miss 2-1 six days earlier in both team’s tournament opener, but the rematch went much like the first.
Ole Miss continued its struggle at the plate against Virginia’s arms, mustering just six hits against Josh Sborz, Artie Lewicki and Nick Howard after being one-hit in the first meeting. The Cavaliers grabbed the lead with three runs in the fourth inning and never relinquished it as only one Rebel baserunner got past first base in the last six innings.
Sborz (6-4) picked up the win after holding the Rebels to an unearned run on four hits while fanning four over the first five innings. Lewicki followed with three innings of one-hit relief while Howard worked a scoreless ninth.
Chris Ellis (10-3) took the loss for Ole Miss in his only relief appearance of the season, giving up three runs on four hits and walking three in 3.2 innings of work.
The final out came nearly 24 hours later than anticipated.
A 1-hour, 33-minute rain delay on Friday suspended the game in the top of the second. Play resumed at 2 p.m. on Saturday with two on and nobody out for Virginia with Ole Miss right-hander Scott Weathersby taking over for Jeremy Massie, who threw 28 pitches before the game was halted.
Weathersby wiggled out of the jam by retiring all three batters he faced before giving way to Ellis, who got the start against the Cavaliers on Sunday.
Ole Miss went up 1-0 in its half of the second when Will Allen singled, moved to third on J.B. Woodman’s infield hit and scored when Woodman was thrown out trying to steal. The Rebels had a chance to add on in in their next at-bat when they loaded the bases with two outs, but Allen’s liner found Kenny Towns’ glove at third to end the inning.
The Cavaliers didn’t miss their chances with the bases juiced in the fourth.
Ellis sandwiched a pair of walks around a Brandon Downes single before Robbie Coman lined a two-run single to right to give Virginia the lead. Leadoff man Branden Cogswell bunted another run home to push the advantage to 3-1.
Coman chased Ellis with a two-out double in the sixth. Wyatt Short came on and got a groundout to strand Coman, but the Cavaliers extended their lead in the seventh when Daniel Pinero led off with a single and came around to score on Joe McCarthy’s double three batters later.
Austin Anderson, Sikes Orvis, Preston Overbey and Errol Robinson had a single apiece for Ole Miss. Coman and Downes each went 2-for-4 for Virginia.
Watch Ellis and outfielder Auston Bousfield, who was held hitless in the tournament, talk about the loss and the impact of the season in the videos below.
See Monday’s edition of the EAGLE for complete coverage from Saturday’s game. (June 21, 2014)