HOOVER, Ala. – Facing a 1-2 count with runners on the corners in the bottom of the ninth, junior Dominic Keegan ripped a single to right field to help fourth-seeded Vanderbilt to a 5-4 walk-off win Ole Miss on Wednesday night at Hoover Metropolitan Stadium.
With the victory, the Commodores eclipse the 40-win mark and move to 40-13 on the season.
Vanderbilt trailed 4-3 entering the ninth, as CJ Rodriguez began the frame with a leadoff single to left center. After Javier Vaz entered to pinch run, Enrique Bradfield Jr. drew a four-pitch walk to place runners on first and second with the tying run in scoring position.
In the very next at-bat, Isaiah Thomas sent a single through the left side, as Vaz came across to score to even the score at four.
A wild pitch in the following at-bat allowed Bradfield to advance to third, before Keegan delivered the game-winning hit to propel the Dores to victory.
Commodore starter Christian Little provided Vandy with his longest outing of the season. The 17-year-old right-hander worked 5.1 innings of one-run baseball, while allowing three hits and one walk. Little tied a career-high in strikeouts with seven on the evening.
Junior Luke Murphy (2-1) shined out of the Vanderbilt bullpen, picking up his second win of the season. The right-hander covered 3.1 frames, allowing one earned run on two hits, while picking up six punchouts.
Vanderbilt struck first in Wednesday’s matchup, plating one run in the bottom of the fourth. With one down, Spencer Jones and Troy LaNeve registered back-to-back doubles, resulting in runners on second and third. Tate Kolwyck followed up with an RBI single through the right side scored the game’s first run and put the Commodores ahead, 1-0.
After the two teams went scoreless in the fifth, Ole Miss put up a three-spot in the sixth to take the lead. The Rebels used a single and a walk to place runners on first and second, before a three-run homer gave Ole Miss a 3-1 lead.
The Commodores responded in the very next half with a pair of runs to even the score at three apiece. With one down, Jones reached on a five-pitch walk before LaNeve followed with a single to place runners on first and second. After a wild pitch allowed both runners to advance 90 feet, Kolwyck collected his second hit of the day with an RBI single through the left side to cut the deficit to one.
Parker Noland continued the inning with a bunt single to load the bases, before a fielder’s choice from Rodriguez allowed the tying run to score to make it a 3-3 game after six full.
Ole Miss used a solo shot in the eighth to regain its lead and move in front, 4-3, but the Commodores rallied for a pair of runs in the ninth to walk it off.
With today’s result, Vanderbilt will now face top-ranked Arkansas tomorrow evening in the final game of the day. The contest will aired live on SEC Network.