Ole Miss softball opened their season with a five-game losing streak this past weekend in Clearwater, Florida. The Rebels had a series of losses including Louisville 4-2, NC State 3-2, Illinois 3-1, Notre Dame 7-5 and Liberty 4-2.
The Rebels fell behind early and were unable to finish a seventh-inning comeback in the season opener against Louisville.
Despite Louisville opening the second inning by scoring a solo home run, the Rebels came back to tie at the end of the inning. After a mishandle at first base, Kelsha Loftin slid into home base. An immediate response from the Cardinals in the third helped them reclaim their lead.
In the seventh inning, the Rebels secured a run with a bunt single from Tate Whitley, and a RBI single hit from Mikayla Allee helped load the bases for Abbey Latham, Autumn Gillespie and Gabby Alverez. However, UL pitcher Chardonnay Harris threw the runner out at third to end the game.
The Rebels also were unable to finish a seventh-inning comeback against NC State when a Wolfpack baseman robbed Nyomi Jones’ game-tying hit. The Rebels ended Friday night after two close games with hopes to switch the momentum on Saturday.
However, the momentum never flipped. The Rebels could not get in the win column even with Allee going 4-5 on Saturday with a pair of walks.
Illinois took the second inning with three points after Ava Tillmann allowed two hits and three walks. Ole Miss hit one point in the third and never scored again during the game. The Rebels put runners on bases during the sixth inning but were unable to finish the game with a win.
Notre Dame was next on the list, but the Rebels’ inability to hold their four-point lead in the fifth inning cost the game. The Fighting Irish managed to plate four runs to add to the two points secured in the second inning — giving them a 6-4 lead.
In the final bats of the game, Allee led the seventh inning with a single but the Fighting Irish held their 7-5 lead, giving Ole Miss their fourth loss of the classic.
In the final game against Liberty on Sunday, the Rebels held their own at the top of the first when Allee, Latham, Jessica Pulk and Alverez put up four-straight singles. With all bases loaded, Paige Smith drove in to give the Rebels’ a 2-0 lead.
However, the Liberty Flames switched the roles to a 3-2 advantage at the bottom of the third. The Flames then added another run in the fifth to fully lock their comeback-lead. Unable to bring the runs home in the seventh again, the Rebels took their final loss of the classic.
The Rebels will travel to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico this weekend. Their first game against Colorado State is set for 6 p.m. this Thursday.