TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (Ole Miss Athletics/WTVA) - No. 4 Ole Miss baseball rode the arm of Ryan Rolison and used a sixth inning RBI from Will Golsan to earn a 3-2 win in the series opener at Alabama.
Ole Miss picked up its 41st regular season victory, the most in program history. The Rebels now sit at 41-13 on the season 17-11 in SEC play, remaining just one game back of Arkansas for the SEC West lead with two games left in conference play.
Rolison, a sophomore from Jackson, Tennessee, struck out eight Alabama batters in six innings of work, allowing just two runs on two hits. Will Ethridge and Parker Caracci combined to work the final three innings to slam the door on the Tide.
Ole Miss got on the scoreboard first in the second inning when Will Golsan and Tyler Keenan tallied back-to-back one-out singles to set the table for junior Chase Cockrell. Cockrell took a 1-0 pitch and lined it down the left field line to score Golsan and give the Rebels an early 1-0 lead.
Alabama would tie the game in the bottom half of the inning on Chandler Taylor's 13th home run of the season.
The Rebels would regain the lead in the fourth on a Cole Zabowski opposite field solo home run to give Ole Miss a 2-1 lead.
The Tide answered back again a half inning later, loading the bases with no outs in the inning. Rolison was able to get a strikeout for the first out of the inning, but Alabama tied the game after Ole Miss second baseman Anthony Servideo fielded a slow roller and fired to first, but Zabowski couldn't hold on to the throw.
With Alabama threatening to take its first lead of the game, Rolison recorded a strikeout and fly out to center to escape the jam. Rolison walked a season-high five in the game, but was able to pitch around the free passes with eight strikeouts and allowing just two hits, a SEC season-low for the lefty.
With the game still knotted at 2-2 in the sixth inning, Thomas Dillard took a 3-1 fastball and hit it off the wall in right-center for a one-out double. Dillard advanced to third on a groundball out by Zabowski. Golsan would take advantage with an infield single to short that he was able to beat out the throw to first. It was Golsan's second hit of the day and all the Ole Miss bullpen would need to help the Rebels pick up the win. Ethridge worked a hitless seventh with one strikeout before handing the ball off to Caracci, who struck out two over two innings of work to earn his 10th save of the season.
Golsan, Keenan and Dillard tallied six of the Rebels' nine hits on the day.
The Rebels will be back in action Friday night looking to take the series at Alabama. First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m.