March 4, 2005
OXFORD, Miss. - Purdue opened its three-game series against No. 16 Mississippi with a 14-3 loss on Friday night at Swayze Field. The loss dropped the Boilermakers to 1-3 on the season while the Rebels improved to 7-3.
Purdue jumped on the board quickly, scoring two runs in the top of the first. Shortstop Mitch Hilligoss led off the game with a single and moved to second when center fielder Andy Dahl followed with a base hit to center field. First baseman Eric Wolfe was then hit by a pitch to load the bases with nobody out. Hilligoss scored the game's first run on a John Hunter sacrifice fly. Dahl and Wolfe then executed a double steal with the throw from Ole Miss catcher Barry Gunther sailing into left field allowing Dahl to score.
Purdue's lead was short-lived as Ole Miss tied the game in the bottom half of the first on Stephen Head's two-run home run, his third long ball of the season.
Facing a 5-2 deficit in the fourth, the Boilermakers plated their final run of the game when right fielder Neal Gorka ripped a double down the right field line scoring Hunter, who had singled. Ole Miss took control from that point on, adding single runs in the fourth and fifth, a pair in the sixth, and five more in the eighth. Of the Rebels' 14 runs, nine came around to score with two outs.
Scott Byrnes pitched the first four innings for Purdue and took the loss, falling to 0-1 on the season. Mark Holliman started on the mound for Ole Miss and went seven innings, improving to 2-0.
The Boilermakers and Rebels will continue their series with a 2:30 EST game on Saturday.