USC fails to find the zone

Ole Miss pounds 14 hits against seven pitchers

Special to The StateMay 7, 2011 

Colby Holmes

FILE PHOTO/THE STATE

OXFORD, Miss. | One day after South Carolina starter Michael Roth pitched eight strong innings at Mississippi, right-hander Colby Holmes did not make it out of the second inning.

Yep, it was one of those days.

Ole Miss jumped on South Carolina for 14 hits en route to a 10-2 victory at Oxford-University Stadium on Saturday. It was the Gamecocks’ most lopsided defeat since losing 10-5 at Clemson on March 6.

Ole Miss (26-21, 10-13 SEC) scored four runs in the first three innings and tacked on three runs in each of the sixth and seventh innings against the Gamecocks (37-9, 18-5).

“We really attacked as an offense. We kept building and tried to win every inning. It was a great day for a lot of the guys,” said Ole Miss second baseman Alex Yarbrough, who was 2-for-4 with four RBIs and two runs scored.

Holmes cited a lack of control for his shortest start of the season.

“I couldn’t find my pitches early on and left my pitches up, and they hit it,” Holmes said. “I had my pitches in the bullpen and when I got to the mound I couldn’t find them. That’s just how it goes sometimes.”

Yarbrough got the scoring started with a two-run homer in the first. Catcher Miles Hamblin added a solo homer in the second and two batters later, Holmes was pulled in favor left-hander Tyler Webb, who pitched in relief of Holmes and helped keep the Gamecocks in the game until the sixth inning.

Ole Miss led off the bottom of the sixth with a double and single, chasing Webb in favor of Jose Mata, and eventually scored three runs on four hits against five USC pitchers.

“The three-run sixth did us in. That was a tough one,” USC coach Ray Tanner said. “They went double-digit hits today and did a great job running the bases and had some extra-base hits with home runs early. They deserved to win today. They were better than us.”

While Ole Miss’ batters were able to earn hits they couldn’t come up with Friday, hard-throwing right-hander David Goforth kept pressure on the Gamecocks by scattering two runs on five hits and one walk in six innings.

“I know his record is not where he wants it to be, but he throws well against us,” Tanner said. “He has great stuff, a fastball that gets to the mid-90s, he’s throwing a really good cutter right now, changeups to lefties. He did a really good job.”

South Carolina’s two runs came in the fourth inning. After Christian Walker walked and Brady Thomas singled, Jake Williams hit a sacrifice fly to score Walker. Evan Marzilli later tripled into the right field corner, scoring Thomas.

The series finishes Sunday at 2:30 p.m. Forrest Koumas (5-0) will pitch for USC against Ole Miss’ Austin Wright (4-4).

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