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Tyler Keenan Slugs Way to Runner-Up Finish at Home Run Derby - Ole Miss Athletics

Last updated: 07-03-2019

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Tyler Keenan Slugs Way to Runner-Up Finish at Home Run Derby - Ole Miss Athletics

saved his best for last, slugging 15 home runs in the final round of the 2019 Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans College Home Run Derby, but it wasn't quite enough to top Northern Kentucky's Griffin Doersching on Saturday night. Doersching totaled 20 in the final round to take home the title in front of 16,647 at TD Ameritrade Park Omaha. Keenan, the fourth Ole Miss baseball player to be invited to the College Home Run Derby, totaled 40 on the night to secure a second-place finish, the best finish ever by a Rebel at the event. With his father, Jimmy, throwing to him, Keenan started strong, smacking a 434-foot home run with his very first swing. He had five homers on the board when he took his timeout with 1:55 left in his first round and caught fire late, sending six over the wall in the final minute to move on with the third-best total in the round. He stepped to the plate needing at least 13 home runs in Round 2 to advance to the final. He again had five to his credit when he called his timeout just past the halfway point in the round, and once again, the Clayton, North Carolina, native found his groove late. Keenan hit five in the final 30 seconds to tie Duke's Michael Rothenberg at 25 through two rounds, but with the higher second-round total, Keenan won the tiebreaker and became the first Rebel ever to advance to the finals. Doersching, who notched the highest total in all three rounds, set the tone with 20 home runs in his final round, giving Keenan a tall task. He started the finals with back-to-back home runs on his first two swings and had totaled nine before calling timeout at 2:04 in the round. Unfortunately, the Rebel home run leader from last season didn't quite have enough in the tank to complete the rally to 20. After the impressive showing at the College Home Run Derby, Keenan will return to the Cape Cod League and rejoin the Harwich Mariners in preparation for the 2020 campaign.

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