Razorbacks Open SEC Play with 10-4 Win over Ole Miss
OXFORD, Miss. – The University of Arkansas softball team made sure to kick off conference play on a good note, Saturday night (March 9), taking game one of the weekend series from Ole Miss, 10-4. It marks the fifth time this season the Hogs scored 10 or more runs.
Ole Miss jumped out to an aggressive start, loading the bases against starting pitcher Mary Haff. Junior Autumn Storms would enter for Haff with one out behind her in the first inning, striking out the side and putting out the flame lit by the Rebel bats.
Storms finished the game with 6.2 innings pitched, tossing eight strikeouts and allowing two walks. The win keeps Storms’ record a clean, 8-0 through 14 appearances.
Arkansas would strike first in the second inning, as sophomore catcher Kayla Green took the 3-2 pitch from Brittany Finney over the left-center wall. The long shot is the fourth for Green this season and the 10th of her career.
The Hogs held onto their one-run lead until the bottom of the third, when the Rebels plated four runs on two hits and an Arkansas error. Ole Miss scored two on an infield hit, that led to a muffed catch at home by Green, then two more on a triple to left field by the Rebel right fielder, Kaylee Horton.
The Razorbacks would go scoreless again in the top of the fourth and take care of business in the bottom of the inning, with Green throwing out a Rebel at second on an attempted steal. That makes four runners caught stealing by Green this season.
Tonight’s game marked only the third time this season that Ole Miss did not successfully steal at least one base.
Arkansas was able to pull within one after Danielle Gibson connected on a 1-0 pitch and soared it over the center field wall. The Hogs now trailed 4-3, after five frames.
Ole Miss would see lots of new Razorback faces in the sixth inning, after a single through the left side by Green got things started, freshman Sam Torres would enter to run for the Hogs and would end up scoring on a single down the left field line off the bat of sophomore Linnie Malkin, who entered to pinch hit for Sydney Parr.
Sophomore Nicole Duncan, who reached on a hit-by-pitch call after Green’s base-hit, scored on a bases-loaded walk by Hannah McEwen.
Gibson followed suit with another free base, scoring Parr and giving the Razorbacks a two-run, 6-4 lead.
The hits kept coming for the Razorbacks and consecutive quality at-bats by Katie Warrick and Ashley Diaz scored McEwen and Hicks to give the Hogs a hefty 8-4 lead through six frames.
The Razorbacks made sure not to let off the gas pedal in the seventh inning, topping off the night with two more runs, raked in off the bat of Gibson once again.
Gibson finished the night with five RBI, pulling in half of the Hogs’ runs on two hits and a bases-loaded walk. Green and McEwen also logged multi-hit performances.
The Razorbacks and Rebels will be back in action tomorrow, (Sunday, March 10) with first pitch slated for 5:00 pm (CT) on the SEC Network.
For all Razorback softball news and information, go to ArkansasRazorbacks.com and follow the Hogs on Twitter at @RazorbackSB, on Facebook at Razorback Softball and on Instagram at @Razorback_SB. Fans can also follow head coach Courtney Deifel on twitter at @CoachDeifel.