The Ole Miss softball team will travel to Starkville on Friday for a three-game series against the Mississippi State Bulldogs.
The Rebels, currently 31-11, have had a standout season so far. They are ranked No. 10 in the latest Softball America poll and hold a No. 14 RPI. In their game Tuesday night against UT Martin, the Rebels scored in every inning, including 8 runs in the second. After just five innings, the Rebels shutout the Skyhawks 13-0.
The 13 runs scored were the third-most for the Rebels this season, following games in which the Rebels racked up 18 runs against Central Arkansas and 15 runs against Samford.
Abbey Latham went 2-3 with a walk, a pair of RBIs and a run scored. Latham’s RBIs marked her eighth multiple-RBI game of the season, tying for the team lead with Brittany Finney.
The Rebels shut the door on the Skyhawks in the second inning when they strung
together hit after hit to score 8 runs on 5 hits with the help of three Skyhawk errors.
Mikayla Allee got the scoring spree started for the Rebels with a sacrifice fly to score a runner. In the next at-bat, Kylan Becker reached on an error, which allowed Amanda Roth to come
home, and Latham followed with a single to plate Allee. After a bunt single from Jessica Puk
scored Becker, Finney rocketed a double to the wall to score 2 and push the lead to 6-0.
Kaylee Horton, whose pop-up was dropped by the UT Martin catcher, continued the hot streak at the plate. With the bases loaded, Autumn Gillespie hit a line drive just inside the baseline at third for a bases-clearing triple. By the end of the inning, the Rebels were up by 9. Two more Skyhawk errors in the third and fourth allowed a pair of runs to come home for Ole Miss in both innings.
On top of the outstanding hitting from the Rebels, Ava Tillmann had an excellent outing in the
circle, throwing 3 shutout innings to earn her seventh win of the season. The sophomore’s
victory marks the sixth straight game that she’s won, boosting her record to 7-2. Savannah Diederich came in for the final two innings to close out the run-rule victory.
The Rebels are looking to keep their momentum going against the unranked Bulldogs. Mississippi State, currently 26-17, has only been able to clench three SEC victories.
Last weekend against the Tennessee Volunteers, the Bulldogs struggled to put runs on the board. In the second game, the Vols run-ruled the Bulldogs and, ultimately, swept the series.
However, Mia Davidson has proved to be the Bulldogs’ standout hitter with a .434 batting average on the season. The sophomore ranks third in the SEC, right behind Rebel hitter Becker, who is ranked second with a .440. Davidson has also hit 22 home runs this season, the most in the SEC.
The Bulldog pitchers have a combined 3.07 ERA compared to the Rebels’ 2.03 ERA and have struggled with command in conference play.
The Rebels and the Bulldogs will play a doubleheader on Friday, starting with a game at 1 p.m and another at 5 p.m. The final game will take place on Saturday at 1 p.m.