Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Ole Miss Softball Heads to Alabama to Face the Tide

By Adam Brown
Sports Editor

Ole Miss softball travels to Tuscaloosa, Alabama to take on the No. 3 Alabama Crimson Tide in the close of the SEC regular season series finale. The first pitch is set for Thursday at 6 p.m. on SEC Network+.

Ole Miss (34-16, 12-9 SEC) comes into the series after sweeping No. 25 UCF at home. Saturday’s finale was the 16th shutout of the season for the Rebels, most in the SEC and third most in the nation. It is one shy of the program record.

Ole Miss finished its home slate with a 24-3 record in Oxford, including a perfect 15-0 against non-conference opponents. The Rebels have won 42 consecutive regular season games played outside of the SEC, dating all the way back to 2018.

Alabama (39-7, 15-6 SEC) has been on a roll as of late, posting seven straight wins after sweeping the last two weekends against No. 13 Louisiana and No. 21 Georgia.

As a club, the Tide are batting over .300 and led at the dish by graduate students Bailey Hemphill and Alexis Mack, both sitting at .398 for the season. Hemphill has also packed plenty of punch with her high average, collecting 8 of Alabama’s 28 home runs on the year while tying for the team lead with Kaylee Tow with 39 runs driven in. Mack, meanwhile, has used her speed to cross the plate a team-high 47 times. The speedy outfielder is also 22-26 on stolen base attempts, just ahead of Elissa Brown who is 20-24.

In the circle, the two main bell cows for the Crimson Tide have been 2019 NFCA All-American Montana Fouts and sophomore Lexi Kilfoyl. Fouts sits at 17-3 in 21 starts, posting a 1.73 ERA in 142 innings with 216 strikeouts to just 37 walks. Kilfoyl has made 18 appearances with 13 starts, posting a 1.56 ERA and an 11-3 record, racking up 95 strikeouts to 19 walks.

This will be the first meeting between the Rebels and the Crimson Tide since the 2018 season in which Alabama won two of three games.

Game times for this weekend’s series are Thursday and Friday at 6 p.m. on SEC Network+ and Saturday at 11 a.m. on SEC Network.