Tigers Defeat No. 9 Ole Miss, 5-4
Published 11:00 am Saturday, April 24, 2021
OXFORD, Miss. – Rightfielder Dylan Crews launched a go-ahead, two-run homer in the seventh inning Thursday night, and reliever Devin Fontenot fired three shutout innings to lift the Tigers to a 5-4 win over ninth-ranked Ole Miss at Swayze Field.
LSU improved to 23-14 overall, 5-11 in the SEC, while Ole Miss dropped to 27-11 and 9-7.
The teams will meet in Game 2 of the series at 6:30 p.m. CT Friday at Swayze Field. The game will be streamed on SEC Network +, and it may be heard on affiliates of the LSU Sports Radio Network.
“I’m so happy for the kids, they deserved this wonderful victory tonight,” said LSU coach Paul Mainieri. “This is a great environment here, and it’s a hard place to win. I knew we would have to play a great ball game in order to have a chance to win, and we did.
“We played a really good ball game tonight and were able to hold on and get the victory. It’s hard to win games in this league, believe me, and I’m just grateful we were able to hold on tonight. It was a great win for our kids and for our school.”
LSU reliever Garrett Edwards (2-2) was credited with the win, as he recorded two outs in the bottom of the sixth inning before LSU surged in front of the Rebels.
Fontenot earned his third save, shutting out Ole Miss for three innings while allowing two hits with three walks and five strikeouts.
Ole Miss reliever Taylor Broadway (3-1) suffered the loss, as he gave up two runs on seven hits in three innings with one walk and two strikeouts.
LSU grabbed a 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning, taking advantage of three Ole Miss errors in the frame. Rightfielder Dylan Crews singled with one out, stole second base and moved to third on an errant throw by catcher Hayden Dunhurst.
Crews scored when Ole Miss third baseman committed an error on a ground ball hit by LSU third baseman Cade Doughty. Designated hitter Cade Beloso reached on an error by first baseman Kael Baker before LSU shortstop Jordan Thompson delivered an RBI single.
Ole Miss narrowed the deficit to 2-1 in the bottom of the first when leftfielder Kevin Graham launched a solo homer, his seventh dinger of the year.
The Rebels tied the game in the fourth when rightfielder Hayden Leatherwood belted a solo homer, his sixth of the season.
Ole Miss took its first lead of the contest in the sixth when shortstop Jacob Gonzalez unloaded a two-run shot, his fifth homer of the year.
LSU, however, struck for three runs in the top of the seventh as first baseman Tre’ Morgan delivered a two-out, RBI single before Crews blasted his 10th homer of the year to give the Tigers a 5-4 advantage.
Fontenot blanked the Rebels in the seventh and eighth innings, but he walked Dunhurst to begin the bottom of the ninth and Bench followed with a single to give the Rebels runners at first and second with nobody out.
Fontenot struck out centerfielder TJ McCants and rightfielder John Rhys Plumlee, but first baseman Kael Baker slapped infield single to load the bases.
Fontenot then fanned designated hitter Calvin Harris to end the game and preserve the victory for the Tigers.