Sunday, February 22, 2009

Extremely Dissapointing

Many of the Rebel faithful are extremely dissapointed after the pathetic effort the Ole Miss basbeall team put up in Mobile this weekend. Sources who were at the games are saying this team did not show much talent nor did they show much energy or desire to win. While I know this is only the first weekend of play of a very long season, but what I heard was pretty upsetting.

It appears the Rebels of this year picked right up where the Rebels of last year left off. Still can not bunt to save their lives, continue to hit into double plays, and make careless errors in the field. I was hoping that Bianco and his young staff would turn things around this year and get back to domination of yesteryear's.

The bright side is the season is extremely young and we have only played three games. You do not win them all in baseball. But you also can't lose early games and expect to host a regional in June, because the SEC is as good as it gets and you need every win you can get outside of the conference. Let's re-evaluate this team a week from now and see if improvements have been made.

MOBILE, Ala. – The Rebels managed 11 hits and a rally to force extra innings, but it wasn’t enough as South Alabama (2-2) came up with a bases loaded single in the 10th to defeat No. 6 Ole Miss (1-2) by a score of 3-2 on Sunday at the Coca Cola Classic.Scott Bittle (0-1) suffered the loss as he gave up the game-winning hit in the 10th. Bittle struck out five and walked three while allowing only the one run on three hits in 2.1 innings. The hit from Sean Laird in the 10th proved to be a big one as he took a 2-2 pitch with the bases loaded and sent it back up the middle to record the game-winning run. Starter Phillip Irwin worked 5.0 innings and allowed two runs on eight hits with five strikeouts.Greg Johnson (1-1) picked up the win in relief for the Jaguars as he worked 2.0 innings and held the Rebels scoreless and limited them to only one hit in his time on the mound. Starter Lance Baxter worked 6.2 innings and allowed nine hits, but only one run.
“It was a tough day offensively,” said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. “We couldn’t string the hits together. We had some opportunities and just couldn’t get the guy home. Runs were at a premium today, and when that is the case you have got to do more. South Alabama played tremendously defensively and deserved the win.”The win was the 1,000th for South Alabama head coach Steve Kittrell, who is in his 27th season as a head coach.The Rebels scored first as a single from Taylor Hashman to right field scored Jordan Henry from third. Henry walked to open the game before moving to second on a groundout from Jeremy Travis. He then took third on a hard shot back to the pitcher from Logan Power before scoring on the Hashman hit. South Alabama tied things in the bottom of the second when Ryan Bohannan scored from second on a single up the middle from David Doss tipped off the glove of a diving Evan Button. Doss was thrown out trying to take second however, leaving the bases empty with one out. Bohannan doubled to the wall to open the inning. Irwin then struck out the next two batters to get the Rebels out of the inning.The Jaguars threatened in the fifth as Zach Grichor stole second and moved to third on a throwing error on the steal attempt with one out on the board. A single up the middle from Clint Reynolds on a full count drove Grichor in and gave South Alabama the 2-1 lead.With two on and no outs in the sixth, the Rebels went to the bullpen for southpaw Kyle Barbeck. Barbeck then got the Rebels out of the inning with no damage as he got a groundout, pop out and ground out to end the inning.Ole Miss tied the game in the seventh when Jeremy Travis scored from second on a single to center field from Matt Smith. Travis reached on an error and moved to second on a wild pitch. Smith was then thrown out stealing to end the inning with the score tied at two. The Rebels threatened in the ninth with runners at the corners and two outs, but a groundout to third ended the inning for Ole Miss and kept the score knotted at two.With two outs in the bottom of the 10th, the Rebels intentionally walked Doss to load the bases and get to Laird. Laird then became the hero for the Jaguars as he laced the offering from Bittle back up the middle to give South Alabama the 3-2 win.Ole Miss will return to action on Tuesday, February 24, when the Rebels host Central Arkansas at the newly renovated Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field. First pitch is set for 3 p.m.