Rebels even series with No. 9 Tennessee in front of record crowd
Published 6:02 am Sunday, May 8, 2016
Ole Miss softball continued its record breaking campaign with a 3-0 shutout over No. 9 Tennessee Saturday afternoon in front of a record crowd 1,410 fans at the Ole Miss Softball Complex.
The win for the Rebels (38-18, 11-12 SEC) is their fourth over a top-25 team this season, and second in as many weekends over a top-20 RPI team in No. 19 Georgia and No. 13 Tennessee.
Ole Miss snapped its seven-year drought to the Vols (39-13, 15-7), earning its first win over the program since April 19, 2009 in what was a series win over then No. 12 Tennessee at home.
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Senior Madi Osias, in her final weekend at home as a Rebel, pitched arguably the best game of her senior campaign allowing just two hits and no runs with six strikeouts, only walking three. She improves her record-breaking win total to 20 on the year, becoming the first Rebel in program history to reach 20 wins in the circle.
Ole Miss tallied just five hits in the contest, but it was all the offense needed in a 3-run fifth inning that pushed the Rebels to 11 SEC wins on the year, tying the school record for league victories in a season.
Freshman Hailey Lunderman, just a day after breaking the single season hits record, added to her already impressive totals going 2-for-3 with a run scored, while Sarah Van Schaik, Courtney Syrett and Grayce Majam all chipped in with one hit.
It was Majam who led off the fifth with a full count walk, who was pinch ran for by Haley Culley. That’s when Tennessee went to the bullpen replacing starter Erin Gabriel, inserting Rainey Gaffin in the circle.
Lunderman kept the inning alive with a 1-out single up the middle, before Lampton reached on an error on the infield that led to the first run. That error came back to bite the Vols, as Van Schaik delivered in the next at-bat with a 2-RBI single into left that scored Lampton and Lunderman, increasing the Rebels’ advantage to 3-0.
Tennessee’s only hits came in the third off a single to right, and in the sixth off a single into left, but Osias worked her way out of multiple jams, stranding two each in the third, fourth and sixth, as the Vols as a team left seven on base.