Hoover, Ala. -- An early deficit was too much to overcome for No. 10 Vanderbilt on Thursday in a 12-9 loss to No. 11 Ole Miss at the Southeastern Conference tournament at the Hoover Met.
The Rebels (43-16) jumped on the Commodores (43-16) and starter Jordan Sheffield for four runs in the second inning and never looked back, eventually taking a 10-0 lead before the Commodores put a run on the board in the bottom of the sixth inning. Bryan Reynolds led off the inning with a solo shot to center field for his team-leading 13th round tripper of the season. A one-out Julian Infante double came in front of back-to-back walks to load the bases for Walker Grisanti. The freshman's ground ball to first base was misplayed to allow two runs to score. Jason Delay's groundout plated the fourth run of the inning to cap the rally.
Ole Miss, however, was not done scoring adding single runs in the seventh and eighth innings to extend the lead to 12-5. The Commodores made it interesting in the ninth sending eight batters to the plate. Two strikeouts were sandwiched around a Grisanti walk before pinch hitter Liam Sabino and Ethan Paul were hit by pitches to load the bases. Jeren Kendall cleared them, lining a triple down the right field line for his school record tying eighth triple of the season. Kendall's eight triples match Tony Kemp (2012) and Ryan Klosterman (2004) for the single-season Vanderbilt record. Reynolds followed with a RBI-single to score Kendall and cut the Ole Miss lead to three runs. Alonzo Jones' bouncer up the middle was fielded by Rebels' shortstop Errol Robinson, who just beat Reynolds to second base to end the game.
Sheffield took the loss allowing a career-high nine runs, five earned, over five innings. Sheffield retired the first four batters of the game but the next five Rebels all reached base with four of them scoring in the second. JB Woodman added a solo homer in the third before the Rebels piled on four more runs on just two hits against Sheffield in the fifth as a passed ball, error and misplayed ball in the outfield contributed to the big inning. The Commodores did not help their starter by making two errors in the game and stranding 13 base runners to match a season-high.
Kendall and Reynolds led the way for the Dores with three hits and three RBI apiece. Freshman Connor Kaiser walked a career-high three times in the loss.
Ole Miss starter James McArthur earned the win allowing three runs, two earned, on five hits over 5.1 innings. Henri Lartigue paced the Rebels with three hits and three runs with Colby Bortles driving in four.
The Commodores face No. 1 Texas A&M tomorrow at 3 p.m. on SEC Network in an elimination game. Kyle Wright gets the ball for Vanderbilt against Aggies' right-hander Kyle Simonds.