OXFORD, Ms - The Arkansas State Red Wolves could not make a 5-1, fifth inning lead hold up as the 11th-ranked Ole Miss Rebels rallied for a 9-6 victory Monday night at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field.
The Red Wolves used two home runs from third baseman Guy Brown to jump out to the 5-1 advantage after four and one-half innings, but Ole Miss scored eight consecutive runs to take the lead for good. The Rebels scored four in the fifth to tie the game at 5-5, then plated four more in the seventh to go up 9-5.
"The whole reason we came here today was that we've got to get better as a squad," said ASU Head Coach Tommy Raffo. "We could schedule other people and make up other games, but to be better, you've got to play better teams. We had an opportunity tonight, and if we make a couple of plays, who knows what happens."
Brown hit a three-run homer in the third, his first home run of the season, to put the Red Wolves on the board.
The Rebels cut the ASU lead to 3-1 in the fourth when catcher Kyle Henson doubled and eventually scored on a ground-out from second baseman Zach Miller, but Brown's second home run of the night stretched the Red Wolves' advantage to 5-1 in the fifth.
Ole Miss took advantage of two ASU throwing errors, an RBI single from designated hitter Matt Snyder and a sacrifice fly from Miller to plate four runs in the bottom of the fifth to tie the game at 5-5.
Miller singled to drive in the go-ahead run in the seventh, and a two-run single from pinch hitter Taylor Hashman extended the Ole Miss lead to 8-5. Hashman scored on a sacrifice bunt from center fielder Jordan Henry for the final run of the seventh and the 9-5 Rebel advantage.
Arkansas State cut into the Ole Miss lead with an RBI single from second baseman Danny Riemenschneider in the eighth to pull within three at 9-6.
Ole Miss pitchers Nathan Baker, Rory McKean and David Goforth combined to strike out 16 ASU batters on the night, with McKean getting the win for the Rebels.
Sophomore Andy Ferguson took the loss for the Red Wolves, giving up six runs on four hits in two and one-thirds innings of work. Ferguson struck out three batters and walked two.
Brown's two home runs and five RBI on three hits led Arkansas State at the plate, while Ole Miss was led by Henson with two hits.