After an epic collapse in the ninth inning on Sunday, Ole Miss found gas in the tank on offense and a reliever to close the door.
Junior right-hander Houston Roth got the final three outs in a scoreless 10th as No. 13 Ole Miss hung on to defeat No. 12 LSU 19-15 to secure the Rebels’ first series win in Baton Rouge since 1982.
There is no midweek game for the Rebels, who return to action Friday at home against Mississippi State.
Obviously, it will be a huge series. The Rebels and Bulldogs are tied for second in the SEC West — two games behind Arkansas — with just one league series left in the regular season.
On Sunday, Ole Miss had leads of 7-0 and 10-1 early in the game. Most importantly, the Rebels led 15-9 in the ninth inning when Parker Caracci trotted out for a second inning in his second appearance of the weekend.
Caracci had pitched a scoreless eighth, getting out of the inning with a double-play ball.
The ninth proved to be more than he could handle. After two quick outs, Caracci gave up six straight hits, the last three of them home runs.
After a three-run shot by Antoine Duplantis got the Tigers (30-18, 14-10 SEC) to within two runs, solo shots by Cade Beloso and Josh Smith tied the game at 15.
Austin Miller relieved Caracci and got the final out of the ninth.
Thomas Dillard, a Greenwood native, struggled all weekend at the plate, going 1-for-15 vs. LSU. His lone hit was a solo home run.
nMSU: The Bulldogs won their series at Texas A&M, 2-1, on Saturday.
After dropping Saturday’s first game 1-0, No. 6 Mississippi State took the series finale 4-3 to win its third SEC road series of the season at No. 14 Texas A&M.
“It is huge for our (postseason) resume and what we are trying to do,” said MSU coach Chris Lemonis. “The first game was a tough one, we just faced a really good arm, but we bounced back and played really well in the second one. This is a really good team that we played today.”
Senior Peyton Plumlee (4-3) was solid for the third-straight start against a ranked opponent in the series finale, working six innings and allowing three runs on five hits.
He struck out one and didn’t issue a walk to pick up his second-straight win over a top-15 opponent.
MSU (38-10, 15-9 SEC) got RBIs from sophomore Justin Foscue and Tanner Allen, along with senior Jake Mangum. Foscue added his 13th home run in the seventh, a solo shot to left field, which would account for the game-winning run.
The first game was also a pitchers duel between MSU freshman JT Ginn and Texas A&M sophomore Asa Lacy. Ginn (8-3) threw six innings and surrendered the lone run of the game on a two-out double in the sixth. He allowed just three hits, struck out seven and walked two in the loss.
MSU is home Wednesday vs. Memphis before heading to Oxford.