Leadoff hitter Grae Kessinger is key for the Ole Miss offense. (Shotgun Spratling)


Ole Miss Shows Resilience Out West


LONG BEACH, Calif. — Maybe it was the two hours sitting on a tarmac in Atlanta. Maybe it was the three hours waiting on Friday to see if the rain would go away. Or maybe it was just solid pitching from Long Beach State on Saturday.

Whatever it was, it took until Sunday for the Ole Miss lineup to wake up on its trip to SoCal. But when it did, the No. 9 Rebels exploded for 11 runs over the final five innings in a 12-1 victory to claim a road series win at Long Beach State (4-8), which hosted a super regional last year.

The teams split a pair of 4-3 games in a Saturday doubleheader. The Rebels were eager to move on to a new day after baggage issues delayed their flight on Thursday, uncommon bad weather delayed their game on Friday and sloppy play defensively delayed the team’s win tally Saturday.

“We weren’t happy with the way we played overall yesterday,” shortstop Grae Kessinger said. “Yeah, we got a win, but we wanted to come out and play our game today. We were able to. We came out, played good baseball and it was a lot of fun.”

Baseball is more fun in the sun, and it was sun’s out, runs out for the Ole Miss offense. Finally receiving some California sunshine, the offense came to life midway through the Sunday matchup. Ole Miss had hit a woeful 2 for 30 with runners on base in the first two games of the series, including 0 for 16 in Game 2.

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