No. 9 Arkansas Topples Ole Miss
OXFORD, Miss. – No. 9 Arkansas (23-7, 5-3 SEC) handed Ole Miss (26-8, 4-4 SEC) its first home loss of the season after piecing together a 6-3 victory Saturday afternoon at Ole Miss Softball Complex. The Razorback win forces a rubber match in Sunday’s series finale.
Senior righthander Mary Haff (10-3) went the distance, spinning her third complete game of the season and issuing her 16th career double digit strikeout performance after retiring 10. The Winter Haven, Fla., product surrendered two earned runs on six hits and tossed five scoreless frames.
Senior KB Sides was perfect at the plate, tying her career-high in walks with three and stringing a single while stealing her 19th bag of the season. Graduate Taylor Ellsworth accelerated the offense, driving in four runs on two hits, including a three-run shot in the second. Audrie LaValley tatted her first home run of the season on a solo shot in the second. Linnie Malkin scorched an RBI single through the left side and Hannah Gammill went 1-for-2 while tying her career-high in walks with two. Danielle Gibson and Valerie Ventura each added a hit.
How It Happened
The Razorbacks got their first run of the day on Ellsworth’s RBI single to left that scored a burning Sides from third. Arkansas added to its lead on Malkin’s chopping single that soared over the third baseman into left to score Ellsworth.
The Hogs continued its scoring output in the second with LaValley’s solo shot to right for a 3-0 lead. Ventura followed LaValley with a single to center and then a Sides walk placed two runners on before Ellsworth smacked a three-run bomb to left for a 6-0 lead.
Arkansas threatened to score in four of the game’s final five innings, putting at least one runner on, but was unable to convert. Sharp defense paired with dominant pitching by Haff carried the Hogs for the remainder of the game to even the series at one heading into Sunday’s finale.
Arkansas handed Ole Miss its first home loss since April 25, 2021Audrie LaValley slashed her first home run of the seasonTaylor Ellsworth tied her career-high in RBIs with fourKB Sides tied her career-high in walks with threeSeven different Hogs recorded at least one hitMary Haff registered her 16th career double digit strikeout performance after fanning 10Arkansas will look for its first series win in Oxford since 2006 in Sunday’s series finale
Arkansas and Ole Miss will battle in the series finale scheduled for 1 p.m. Sunday. The game will be available on SEC Network+.
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