Friday proved to be an active day in the world of SEC softball. Seven games went down, including a doubleheader between Ole Miss and LSU and there was plenty of action to go around.
In that aforementioned doubleheader, the Rebels were able to get the better of the Bayou Bengals.Ole Miss frustrated LSU hitters and kept them stymied for the entirety of it, winning 1-0 in Game 1, and 1-0 in Game 2. All it took for the Rebels to sweep the 11th-ranked Tigers was two combined runs and some dominant pitching. Miranda Strother got the lone run in Game 1 off a solo shot in the bottom of the eighth inning. In Game 2, a run was scored off an error.
Shutouts were apparently all the rage on Friday as Texas A&M and Florida each pitched ones of their own, too. The Aggies handed Arkansas yet another conference loss, winning 3-0 over the Razorbacks, while the Gators kept the Wildcats quiet, earning a 4-0 victory of their own. Gators pitcher Kelly Barnhill trimmed her ERA all the way down to a minute 0.21 after pitching a complete game shutout. Trinity Harrington meanwhile cut hers down to 1.03 following a complete game shutout of her own in which she struck out five.
In even bigger news, South Carolina was able to upset No. 2 Florida State with a 7-2 victory. The Gamecocks smashed the Seminoles, predominantly so in the fourth inning as they put up a five-spot in the frame. Alyssa VanDerveer and Tiara Duffy each hit home runs in the victory, flexing their muscles for their fifth and third homers of the season respectively. Cayla Drotar and Nickie Blue kept FSU at bay on the mound, combining for just four hits allowed - all tagged to Drotar - with three strikeouts.
Mizzou was able to score a huge upset road win over Auburn to start their series. The Tigers took down the other Tigers 6-1 in what was only the fourth loss Auburn has taken on their home field all season. Braxton Burnside went deep for the Tigers as did Kirsten Mack, who did it not once, but twice. Chloe Rathburn picked up the remaining RBI for the Tigers in the win. Stud Kasey Cooper provided the only damage all night for Auburn, hitting her seventh home run of the season and picked up a stolen base - her sixth - to boot.
In the only other game of the day, Mississippi State upset No. 19 Georgia. The Bulldogs’ struggles in SEC play continue as they racked up their 11th loss against conference opponents. State let things fly off the handle in the sixth inning as they put up four runs in the frame to pull away. Georgia simply couldn’t muster anything up in the ensuing two innings, ultimately leading to their demise.
Today’s Softball Schedule
|North Texas vs. Florida||Noon||SEC Network+||WatchESPN|
|LSU vs. South Carolina||Noon||SEC Network||WatchESPN|
|Ole Miss vs. Missouri||1 p.m.||SEC Network+||WatchESPN|
|Tennessee vs. Texas A&M||1 p.m.||SEC Network+||WatchESPN|
|Auburn vs. Alabama||1 p.m.||ESPN||WatchESPN|
|Georgia vs. Arkansas||2 p.m.||SEC Network+||WatchESPN|
|Kentucky vs. Mississippi State||2 p.m.||SEC Network+||WatchESPN|
|Florida A&M vs. Florida||2:30 p.m.||SEC Network+||WatchESPN|
There aren’t too many cosmetic changes to the schedule on Saturday as most of the action from Friday is carrying over.
The big game of the day however did not take place on Friday as Tennessee begins a series with Alabama.
The two teams are hanging around at the top of the standings as the Vols check in at 3rd in the SEC while the Tide are fourth. Separated by two games in the loss column, a series win for either could help tip the scales in each of their favor going forward as the stretch run looms ahead. The game gets top billing Saturday night as it will be featured on the SEC Network.