OXFORD, Miss. — The Vanderbilt baseball team’s comeback came up short, dropping the series finale to Ole Miss, 13-10, on Sunday afternoon at Swayze Field. With the loss, the Commodores move to 36-12 on the season, including a 17-9 mark in Southeastern Conference play.
Offense was the highlight of the afternoon, as the two teams combined for 23 runs, 26 hits and six home runs. Vanderbilt owned the advantage in hits, with a 14-12 mark, as eight of nine starters registered at least one hit in the matchup.
The Commodores trailed by as many as eight runs, as Ole Miss put up a 10-spot in the third to jump out to a 10-2 lead. Vanderbilt battled back to make it a 10-7 contest after four innings of action, before the two teams traded runs across the remainder of the game.
Vandy scored three runs across the eighth and ninth innings to make things interesting, but the Rebels would hold on to earn the win and claim the series.
Vanderbilt used four pitchers in the finale, as starter Patrick Reilly (4-2) suffered his second loss of the season. Reilly lasted 2.1 innings, allowing four earned runs on three hits and three walks, while fanning three batters.
The trio of Hunter Owen, Nick Maldonado and Luke Murphy each worked out of the Commodore bullpen.
Vanderbilt began the days scoring, striking for a pair of runs in the third to grab the early lead. Tate Kolwyck led off the frame with a single up the middle before Enrique Bradfield Jr. lined a single to left to put two runners on.
After Bradfield moved himself into scoring position with his 40th stolen base of the season to place runners on second and third, Dominic Keegan lined an RBI single up the middle to score two and put the Commodores in front, 2-0.
Ole Miss answered back in the very next frame, exploding for 10 runs in the third. The Rebels plated 10 runs on five hits, including four extra-base hits – two two-run doubles and two home runs – to move ahead and take a 10-2 lead.
The Commodores began to chip away at the big deficit, responding with a five-run inning in the fourth. Isaiah Thomas began things with a one-out double before advancing to third on a stolen base. Kolwyck brought across the first run of the inning with an RBI single through the left side before Troy LaNeve followed with a single to place runners on the corners.
After Bradfield loaded the bases with a walk, Carter Young connected on his second homer of the weekend and first career grand slam to bring Vanderbilt within three and make it a 10-7 contest.
Ole Miss put up single tallies in both the fifth and sixth to pad its lead. The Rebels used an RBI single in the fifth to score a run, while a solo shot in the sixth extend the Ole Miss lead to 12-7 after six full.
Vanderbilt added a pair in the eighth to make it a three-run game. Kolwyck led off the frame with his sixth home run of the season, sending a ball to deep left field. One batter later, Bradfield drew his second walk of the game before moving into scoring position with his second stolen base of the game.
Two at-bats later, Keegan picked up his third hit of the day with an RBI double to right field to score Bradfield and bring the score to 12-9.
The Rebels belted their fourth home run of the day in the eighth to extend their lead to 13-9, giving Vanderbilt a four-run deficit in its last at-bat.
The Commodores would plate one in the ninth, as a sacrifice fly from Spencer Jones brought one across to set the score at 13-10, the eventual final.
Vanderbilt returns to action on Tuesday evening to begin a four-game homestand. The Commodores will welcome Florida International for the midweek matchup, which is scheduled for a 6:30 p.m. first pitch. Fans can catch all the action on SEC Network+.