OXFORD, Miss. - The Rebels picked up the first series sweep of the season behind solid defense and a strong hitting performance as No. 17 Ole Miss (6-1) defeated Oakland (0-3) by a score of 9-3 on Sunday at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field.
The top of the order was big for the Rebels in picking up the sweep, combining for nine hits and seven walks in the win. Freshman Tanner Mathis pace the team with a 3-for-4 performance, while sophomore Matt Snyder drew three walks on the afternoon.
Junior right-hander Trent Rothlin (2-0) picked up the win as he worked 5.0 innings and held the Golden Grizzlies scoreless in his time on the mound. He walked four and struck out one while giving up only three hits.
Connor Mielock (0-1) took the loss as he allowed five runs - four earned - on five hits with four walks and two strikeouts.
"We are certainly happy to win all three games," said Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco. "We can still play better. We are leaving too many guys on base still. I am really pleased with our defense and I thought we played well defensively all weekend. The competition is going to get better from here as we play Memphis and Tulane this week. Today even though we didn't strike out as many as we normally do, we made plays in other ways and did a good job turning double plays."
Ole Miss got on the board in the fourth when former Nacogdoches Dragon David Phillips hit a two run shot to left center that scored Zach Miller. Miller walked to open the inning before the Phillips hit to give the Rebels a 2-0 lead.
The Rebels then added four runs in the fifth inning, using a rally sparked by a lead-off single from Tim Ferguson. Ferguson singled and stole second before Mathis drew a walk. Matt Smith then singled to score Ferguson and move Mathis to second. A walk of Matt Snyder then loaded the bases. Miller was hit by a pitch to push Mathis home and keep the bases loaded before Alex Yarbrough came up with a two-RBI single to give the Rebels the 6-0 advantage.
Ole Miss added three more runs in the sixth inning as Kevin Mort doubled, before taking third on a single from Mathis and scoring on a wild pitch that moved Mathis to second. Snyder walked to put two men on before Miller hit a double off the wall in right center, scoring both Mathis and Snyder and giving the Rebels the 9-0 lead.
Oakland went to work in the seventh, pushing a pair a runs across to get on the board. Mike Carson singled and moved to third on a double from Connor Mielock before scoring on a single from Jake Richardson. Tim Ryan then singled to score Mielock and the Golden Grizzlies trailed 9-2.
The visitors from Oakland pushed a third run across in the eighth when Aaron Cieslak scored on a groundout to short from Brett Geschke. Cieslak tripled to open the inning, putting himself in scoring position for the Geschke hit. Brett Huber and David Goforth combined to hold Oakland off the board from there, however, as the Rebels picked up the win and the series sweep.
Ole Miss returns to action on Tuesday when the Rebels host the Memphis Tigers at 6:30 p.m. at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field.