Mike Bianco and Ole Miss baseball opened up the 2021 college baseball season with a 7-3 win over No.10 TCU in the State Farm College Baseball Showdown.
The beginning of the highly anticipated 2021 Miss baseball season has finally begun. Coach Mike Bianco and the Rebels saw a successful 2020 season. Although the season was cut short because of Covid-19, the Rebels finished with a 16-1 ranking and were ranked as high as No.3 in some national polls. The Rebels had a great team and lost only two starters entering the 2021 season.
The Rebels opened the 2021 college baseball season in Arlington, Texas in the State Farm College Baseball Showdown. The showdown pits three SEC teams against three BIG12 teams in the three-day event. No.6 Ole Miss, No.7 Miss State, and No.8 Arkansas represent the SEC, and No.3 Texas Tech, N0.9 Texas, and No.10 TCU represent the BIG12. Day-one Ole Miss opened the three-game series with a 7-3 win over No.10 TCU.
The Opening Game
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After a scoreless opening frame for both teams, the Rebels got on the board first with 4 runs in the top of the second inning. The Horned Frogs answered with 3 runs to cut into the Rebels lead at 4-3. In the top of the seventh, the Rebels added two more runs to push their lead to 6-3. The Rebels would keep TCU off the board and add a run in the top of the ninth to push the lead to 7-4 which would be the final score.
Ole Miss had three Rebels who had multiple-hit games. Leading all Rebels at the plate was Ben Van Cleve who went 2 for 3 as DH. Van had 2 RBI and 1 run scored. Hayden Dunhurst went 2 for 4 with 1 RBI and 2 runs scored. Peyton Chatagnier went 2 for 5 and had 3 RBI. Jacob Gonzalez went 1 for 5 while Tim Elko and Trey Lafleur each went 1 for 4 in the game.
On the mound, Doug Nikhazy drew the start for the Rebels. Nikhazy went for 1.2 innings allowing 3 earned runs on 3 hits with 3 Ks and 4 BBs. Jackson Kimbrell (1-0) entered in the 2nd and went for 2.1 innings allowing 2 hits with 4 Ks and 1 BB. Kimbrell picked up the win. Drew McDaniel entered in the 5th and went for 1.0 inning allowing 2 hits with 1 K and 1 BB. Taylor Broadway entered in the 6th and went the duration allowing 1 hit with 4 Ks. Broadway earned the save.
The Rebels will be back in action Sunday as they face No.3 Texas Tech in game-two of the State Farm College Baseball Showdown. First-pitch from Arlington, Texas is set for 3:00 pm CT and the game can be seen on Flobaseball.com with a required subscription. Good luck to coach Mike Bianco and Ole Miss baseball. As always, stay safe and Hotty Toddy.