Feb. 18, 2005
HOUSTON - Lamar grabbed the early lead, but No-15 ranked Mississippi came back to hand the Cardinals their first loss of the season, 5-3, Friday afternoon in the opening game of the Coca-Cola Classic hosted by Rice University at Reckling Park.
Lamar (6-1) will play Southwest Missouri State Saturday at 4:30 p.m. and close out the classic with a 3:30 p.m. game against host Rice. Scott Vander Weg, who is 0-0 with a 0.00 earned run average in two starts, is scheduled to start for the Cardinals against SMS.
The Cardinals jumped out to the early lead with a pair of runs in the top of the second inning. Andrew Leal, who went 1-for-3 with two runs scored, led off the inning with a single. Michael Ambort followed with a walk and both runners moved into scoring position with a wild pitch.
Jeremy Gray, who was 1-for-4 with two RBI, drove in Leal with the game's first run with a ground out to second base. Will Henderson drove in Ambort with a sacrifice fly to left field to put Lamar up 2-0.
Ole Miss (2-0) struck for three runs in the bottom of the fourth inning to take a 3-2 lead. Chris Coghlan and Brian Pettway started the inning with back-to-back singles. Preseason All-American Stephen Head was intentionally walked to load the bases with no outs.
Jon-Jon Hancock followed with a 2-run double down the left field line to drive in Coghlan and Pettway. Barry Gunther reached on an error by third baseman Adrian Cantu and Alex Presley drove in Hancock with a fielder's choice.
Lamar tied the game at 3-3 with a run in the top of the fifth inning. Leal started a two-out rally with a walk. Ambort singled to right field and Leal advanced to third base on the hit. Gray drove in Leal with a single to left field.
The Rebels reclaimed the lead in the home half of the fifth inning on a two-out solo home run to right field by Coghlan, who was 2-for-4 with two runs scored. Ole Miss added an insurance run in the bottom of the seventh inning. Presley led off the inning with a single to right, stole second and scored on Mark Wright's double to left center.
Derrick Gordon (1-1) started and took the loss for the Cardinals. He pitched six innings, allowing five runs, four earned, on seven hits with five strikeouts and one walk. Trey Swor pitched two innings of scoreless relief, allowing no hits with two strikeouts.
Mark Holliman (1-0) started and picked up the win for the Rebels. He allowed three runs on six hits with five strikeouts and five walks in five and two-third innings pitched. Matt Maloney pitched the final three and one-third innings to pick up his first save of the season. He allowed no runs on one hit with four strikeouts.
Lamar 020 010 000 - 3 7 2
Miss. 000 310 10x - 5 7 1
Derrick Gordon, Trey Swor (7) and Michael Ambort. Mark Holliman, Matt Maloney (6) and Barry Gunther. W - Holliman (1-0). L - Gordon (1-1). Sv. - Maloney (1). 2B - Miss.: Hancock, Franklin. 3B - none. HR - Miss.: Coghlan (1). T - 2:27. A - 259. Team Records - Lamar 6-1, Mississippi 2-0.