April 4, 2003
Knoxville, Tenn. - The Tennessee Volunteers used the big inning and capitalized on the wildness of the Ole Miss Rebels' pitching staff as it parlayed nine walks into a 7-2 victory in the first of three games at Lindsey Nelson Stadium.
The Vols (18-11, 5-5 SEC) sent 12 men to the plate in scoring six runs in the fifth. Trailing 1-0 they got two hits while taking advantage of five walks, a hit batter and an error to break the game open.
Rebel starter Mark Holliman (3-2) was wild from the start, walking eight batters in 4 2/3 innings, including issuing two free bases with the bases loaded as the Vols took a 2-1 lead. Josh Alley then slapped a two-run single to right to extend the lead to 4-1 before the second Rebel error of the night led to two more and a 6-1 advantage.
Nick Bradshaw completed the game as Stephen Head and Matt Tolbert each had two hits to pace the Rebels.
Kyle Norrid drove his second run of the night with a single in the sixth for a 7-1 lead.
The Rebels (18-11, 5-5 SEC) wasted opportunities to get to Vol starter Ben Riley (3-2) early as they left four runners on base in the first two innings before plating their first run in the third when Chad Sterbens scored on a ground out after singling to lead off the inning and taking third on Seth Smith's double.
Riley would give up just two hits over the next 4 2/3 innings before turning the game over to Beau Massey who closed out the game. A wild pitch by Massey led to the second Rebel run in the eighth.
Game two of the series is Saturday at 7 p.m. ET.