By Adam Brown
The No. 10 Ole Miss Rebels opened the 2019 season with a 10-1 victory over the Wright State Raiders.
Ole Miss (1-0) jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first with a solo home run off the bat of Tyler Keenan. The Rebels never looked back in the game after Cooper Johnson belted the second home run of the season.
Johnson had a career night at the dish in the season opener going 3-for-4 with a single, double, home run and two RBIs. This was his first three-hit game as a Rebel.
The Rebels’ starter junior Will Ethridge had a bumpy start in the first, tossing 29 pitches to the Wright State batters. His night came to a close after working 5.2 innings against the Raiders without a score. He struck out five batters, walked two and allowed four hits. Bianco made the call to the bullpen to bring in junior right-hander Austin Miller to close the door on Wright State’s two runs on base.
Miller had the longest outing of his career as he worked 3.1 to pick up the save. He gave up one run on three hits while striking out two Raider batters.
In the fourth inning, Zabowski crossed the plate on a RBI by Johnson. Three more Rebels scored in the sixth as Johnson, Anthony Servideo and Ryan Olenek crossed the plate on two sacrifice fly’s and a double by Dillard.
Wright State’s (0-1) starter—right-handed pitcher Bear Bellomy—worked 4.2 innings to allow five runs on seven hits. He struck out two Rebels and walked three in his outing.
Wright State made the call to the bullpen in the bottom of the fifth with a runner at first to bring in RHP Sam Wirsing. Wirsing gave up three runs on two hits in 1.1 innings of work.
The Raiders brought Tristan Haught to the mound in the seventh inning and Wes Earles in the eighth.
Wright State got on the scoreboard in the eighth inning on a double by Peyton Burdick that scored pinch hitter Alex Alders.
The Rebels finished the night with 10 runs on 11 hits. Wright State plated a run on seven hits in the season opener.
Ole Miss and Wright State return to action on Saturday for game two of the series. The first pitch is at noon.