Another game, another Rebs dub.
After Ole Miss took down Auburn in their first game at the College World Series, they were matched up with the Arkansas Razorbacks for Game 2. A matchup that was the biggest of the season for both sides stayed true to what we’ve seen in Omaha thus far, a lop-sided victory.
Many expected this one to be a matchup for the ages, and it started out that way. The Rebels got started early on offense yet again this tournament, plating two in the top of the first due to a Kevin Graham RBI-single followed by a bases-loaded walk that scored Graham later on in the inning.
This game gave a whole new meaning to “the Rebs are hot.” To make a long story short, they scored a lot of runs. In fact, the Rebel offense scored two runs in each of the first three innings of this one, jumping out to a 6-3 lead after three. In the fifth, they plated four more, followed by a run in the eighth and ninth that ended in a 13-5 victory.
Ole Miss tallied 13 hits in the contest, seven coming from the combination of Justin Bench and Calvin Harris. Both had career days at the dish, with Bench and Harris going 4-for-6 and 3-for-4, respectively, while accounting for just under half of the runs.
Something that is not to be forgotten in this one is how well Hunter Elliot threw the ball. In sixth and a third, Elliot gave up six hits and three runs, with only one being earned. A couple of errors and unfortunate lighting allowed some runs early, but Elliot settled in and put up five straight zeros to end his day.
This game puts Ole Miss in the proverbial driver’s seat, controlling their own destiny to the Championship Series. After Tuesday’s elimination game, Ole Miss will once again face the Razorbacks on June 22 for a chance to make it to the finals, which is something that is wild yet not surprising to believe.
In his post-game interview with the SEC Network, Kevin Graham shared his thoughts on what this journey has felt like for this squad.
“We’re just a fun group of guys to be around, I think that’s a big part of it. We love seeing each other every day. Even through that stretch when we weren’t playing well, we still enjoyed coming to the park every day and putting in work.”
The belief and resilience this team has shown after seemingly being dead in the water after the Arkansas series in the regular season are astounding. They’ll get a chance to punch their ticket to the Championship round of the College World Series on June 22 against those very same Razorbacks at 6 p.m. CDT. The Rebels have announced that John Gaddis will be getting the nod, and he’ll need all of Rebel Nation behind him.