No. 22 Ole Miss softball scored first, but ultimately fell to No. 7 Texas A&M, 4-2, in its SEC opener Friday night.
Two Ole Miss pitchers – starter Morgan Bruce and Kaitlin Lee – allowed just seven hits to the Aggies (23-2, 3-1 SEC), but five walks and a hit batsman proved to be costly. Offensively, the Rebels (21-4, 0-1 SEC) were able to score the first run of the night, but only mustered three hits throughout the contest.
Miranda Strother, Dylinn Stancil and Alyssa Gonzalez all finished with one hit each, as Gonzalez had the team’s lone RBI off her RBI single in the second. Sarah Van Schaik also reached on a walk and scored a run, and Stancil also crossed home once.
The Aggies had two chances early on when they put two runners aboard in both the first and second inning, but Bruce worked out of the jam twice to keep the game scoreless midway through the second.
Strother then led off the home half with an infield hit, before Stancil rolled a single through the left side. After a fielders’ choice resulted in an out at third, Gonzalez ripped an RBI single up the middle scoring Stancil, putting Ole Miss on top early, 1-0. The Rebels had another chance to score with two runners in scoring position, but a caught stealing on a squeeze attempt, and groundout on the infield ended the frame keeping it a 1-0 score.
Bruce issued a leadoff walk to begin the third, then hit a batter and walked another setting up a bases loaded situation for the Aggies. Sarah Hudek then roped a double off the wall in left field scoring one, before Strother’s throw home from center got another runner trying to score. Bruce then threw a wild pitch as Texas A&M took a 2-1 lead midway through the third.
The Rebels got a two out baserunner on in the fourth when Kylan Becker reached on an error and stole second, but a lineout back to second ended any threat. Bruce worked a 1-2-3 frame for the first time all night in the fourth, before the Rebels tied it back up in the home half.
Van Schaik reached on a two out walk, and Gonzalez then rolled a ground ball to short, but the throw was wide of the bag allowing her to reach safely. After the ball dribbled around behind the bag, Van Schaik came all the way around and scored, tying the contest back up at 2-2.
The Aggies responded with a solo shot in the fifth to retake the lead, 3-2, before Lee entered to work two-straight strikeouts. Texas A&M would go on to add an insurance run in the seventh off an RBI double.
Courtesy of Ole Miss Sports