No. 18 Ole Miss Avoids Bulldog Sweep

April 14, 2012

1st2nd3rd4th5th6th7th8th9thRHE
Ole Miss 200 300 2 10 8 200
Georgia0 100 20000 3 10 1
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ATHENS, Ga. --- Georgia missed an opportunity for an SEC sweep of No. 18 Ole Miss, falling to the Rebels 8-3 Saturday at Foley Field.

Ole Miss (24-12, 7-8 SEC) jumped to a 2-0 lead in the first and wound up with 20 hits on the afternoon. After retiring the first two batters, Georgia lefthander Blake Dieterich, who was making first start of the year, gave up three consecutive hits, the last of which was a two-run triple by Will Allen..

Georgia  (22-14, 7-8 SEC) cut the deficit in half when Brett DeLoach reached home in the second. DeLoach (3-5, RBI) led off with a single, Jonathan Hester walked and Peter Verdin flared one into center field to load the bases with no outs. Conor Welton drove in DeLoach with a shallow blooper that landed out of the third baseman's reach. The bases were loaded again with no outs, but Rebel pitcher Mike Mayers struck out the side, to prevent more scoring.

The Rebels picked up three additional runs in the fourth, making it a 5-1 contest. Designated hitter John Gatlin plated Andrew Mistone on a one-out double to deep left, and Blake Newalu followed with a single to put runners at the corners. This brought losing pitcher Dietrich's day to an end. The lefty finished with four earned runs, nine hits and a walk in 3.1 innings, dropping to 3-2 on the year. Chase Hawkins took over on the mound and gave up a base hit to Tanner Mathis that brought in Gatlin. When Mathis attempted to steal second during the ensuing at-bat, Georgia catcher Brandon Stephens overthrew second base, allowing Newalu to score and putting Newalu at third with one out. Hawkins managed to halt the surge there, forcing a flyout and a groundout to get out of the jam.

In the fifth, the Bulldogs made up some ground, as both Kyle Farmer and DeLoach crossed the plate. Farmer smacked a one-out double to right, and, after Hunter Cole struck out, DeLoach drove him in with a single. Hester walked for the third straight time to move DeLoach to second, whence he scored off a base hit from Verdin. Ole Miss then replaced starter Myers with Chris Ellis, who immediately threw a wild pitch to put runners on second and third. Welton could not bring those runners home, though, as he grounded out to end the inning with the tally at 5-3. Ellis picked up the win to improve to 3-0 on the season.

Ole Miss stretched its lead back to four in the seventh, as Georgia's pitching struggled. With one out, reliever Luke Crumley loaded the bases by giving up a single and hitting two batters. He yielded the mound to Earl Daniels, who faced just one batter, walking a run in before leaving it to Pete Nagel. After giving up an RBI single, Nagel was able to get the last two outs. He allowed one more run in the eighth to yield the final score of 8-3.

"We had a good week overall in going 3-1 and winning an SEC series against a good team, but today credit Ole Miss for coming out and getting the victory," said Georgia coach David Perno. "We're going to leave Blake (Dieterich) in the rotation now and build up his pitch count. However, we still need for a few more guys to step up in the bullpen. Some did okay today but not great and we need to figure some things out in the bullpen. Unlike the first two games of the series, we didn't have enough timely hits or get a big inning when we had a chance today."

Dieterich has served as the team's closer this season, going 3-1 with a 1.82 ERA and six saves before moving in the rotation for this series.

Georgia will return to action Monday, April 16, against Liberty at Foley Field. It will be free admission. This game was not on the regular schedule but added last week due to a rainout earlier this month.

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