Allow us to briefly reset things here before we get going.
There is but one undefeated team left in the SEC. That’s Alabama, who at 21-0 are setting the pace thus far this season. They are doing so with great pitching but somewhat so-so- offense. For their sake, that trend continues and they don’t run into any danger when SEC play comes around. Speaking of the Tide, they play Mississippi Valley State at 7 p.m. on Wednesday night.
Down the rungs, we’ve got four teams with two losses. Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and Tennessee are part of that club. The team that owns the lengthiest win streak of that bunch is the Gamecocks, who’ve won their last 14. The Vols have racked up eight victories in a row, while the Dawgs have picked up three. Florida has merely won one, having beat Washington all the way back on Friday. Their two losses came to UCLA, and there’s no particular shame about that, of course, given the Bruins’ standing in the country.
As it pertains to this evening’s festivities, Georgia will play in-state rival Georgia Tech at 5 p.m. ET. The Dawgs will be looking for their fourth victory in a row. South Carolina, meanwhile, is hoping to extend their win streak to 15 as they face off with Winthrop at 3 p.m. Coincidentally enough, Florida and Tennessee are set to face off in their respective conference openers this weekend, in what’s sure to be an exciting series.
We continue down the rungs to the middle of the pack. Arkansas sits at 18-3 so far, standing as the only three-loss team in the conference. Then we have two four-loss teams in Auburn and LSU. LSU has scored the second-most runs in the conference so far thi season, and are near the top in most offensive categories. Arkansas kinda hangs around the middle in terms of offense, but their pitching is elite, primarily led by the arm of Autumn Storms. Auburn is among the best in the conference as well, showcasing great numbers on offense and in the circle.
Lately, these teams have been solid, although Auburn is coming off of a loss to to Washington last Friday. Arkansas, on the other hand, has been a winner in their last eight, while LSU has picked up four consecutive victories. Neither of these three teams are in action on Wednesday night. LSU won 10-3 over Northwestern State on Tuesday, though, and Auburn will take on Michigan State in the only game on Thursday.
Mia Davidson and Fa Leilua have been doing the most for Mississippi State this season. The Bulldogs, though, have five losses on the season thus far. They have won three in a row, and have done well after a rough 4-3 start to the season. They have since taken 11 of the last 13 games to boast a 15-5 record. Granted, none of their wins have come against ranked squads, but wins are wins, right? State defeated UT Martin 9-1 on Tuesday and won’t play until Friday.
We continue on to the two six-loss teams in the conference. Texas A&M and Ole Miss are 14-6 and 13-6 on the season so far. The similarities don’t end there, as they’ve each won five in a row heading into Wednesday’s slate of action. Ole Miss’ offense is not quite getting the job done this season, as they have the lowest team BA of anyone in the conference at .268. Their pitching has been stout so far though, which has primarily carried them this season.
A&M, meanwhile, has been a mixed bag, although their pitching has been the “worst” so far, with a team ERA of 3.08. Which, obviously, ain’t too bad, but in a conference that has eight teams with ERAs under 2.00, it will cost you. The offense has been good enough though, primarily led by the bat of Kelbi Fortenberry and Riley Sartain, who has been stout at getting on base this season.
Ole Miss and Texas A&M will put their win streaks on the line tonight against Austin Peay and UT Arlington respectively.
Finally, Kentucky and Mizzou are the only teams with seven losses this season. The Wildcats and Tigers are coming off victories, as UK has a three-game winning streak while the Tigers were winners in their last game. Mizzou’s struggles this season have been mostly in the OBP department, as they rank 11th in the conference in team OBP. They’re also struggling to score runs, also sitting 11th in that category and 10th in home runs.
Kentucky has been somewhat unspectacular but not sitting in the cellar, except in the hit department. Only Ole Miss has hit the ball fewer times than the Wildcats have this season. Kentucky also has accumulated the third-lowest amount of total bases in the conference this season. Pitching wise, they’ve been lit up, with a team ERA of 3.06 and a BAA of .263, the worst in the conference. They’ve allowed the second-most amount of homers, also.
So, there we have it. Before conference play gets into action, this is where the SEC stands. Unsurprisingly, the conference is looking great yet again, as they remain a consistent threat to have at least one of their teams vying for the WCWS later this summer. It’s been a fun ride through the first month, and now the fun is about to really begin.