OXFORD, Miss. – Missing out on some key scoring opportunities, the Lipscomb baseball team dropped a 10-1 decision to No. 7 Ole Miss on Friday night at Swayze Field in Oxford.
As early as the second inning, the Bisons (6-8) would get a runner in scoring position as senior centerfielder Zach Lowery and fellow senior catcher Taylor Stewart would reach on back-to-back base hits. Ole Miss (14-1) starter Bobby Wahl would get out of the jam however inducing a pair of fly balls to the outfield to end the threat.
“I thought we swung the bats pretty well,” said Lipscomb head coach Jeff Forehand. “We had some ‘loud’ outs hitting the ball on the nose but you have to give Ole Miss credit. Wahl was lights out.
“We didn’t execute on a few pitches and gave up runs in three frames where we had a chance to get out of them without any damage but we didn’t. You can’t do that against a good team. Good team’s capitalize on your mistakes and Ole Miss did that tonight and we didn’t.”
The Rebels would then use a two-out base hit to open the scoring in the contest with a pair of runs against Lipscomb senior starter Josh Cotham in the bottom of the frame. Ole Miss added on four more runs in the bottom of the third to take a 6-0 lead before putting the game out of reach with a four-run fourth that ended Cotham’s night on the hill.
Ole Miss also tagged senior reliever Jordan Zelhart with a run in the fourth before sophomore J Hwang came on to work three scoreless innings to finish out the game.
Despite being down 10 runs heading into the final frame, the Bisons refused to go quietly. Lowery opened the stanza with his second hit of the night before Stewart grounded into a double play after being called out on a very close play at first base. Sophomore second baseman Noah Chandler extended the inning with a two-out single before senior third baseman Gray Hutchinson singled to right putting Chandler in scoring position.
A wild pitch from Ole Miss reliever Jeremy Massie moved both runners into scoring position for junior left fielder Chad Shannon, who delivered a single to right to thwart the Rebels shutout bid. Massie then retired sophomore shortstop Joey Cecere to end the contest and pick up the save.
Cotham (1-2) took the loss on the hill for Lipscomb giving up nine earned runs and seven hits in three innings of work. The righty walked four and struck out three. Wahl improved to 4-0 giving up only three hits in six innings of work before handing the game over to Massie.
Game two of the 3-game series is set for 1:30 p.m. on Saturday afternoon at Swayze Field.