OXFORD, Miss. – Ole Miss junior outfielder RT Cantillo hit a pair of home runs and junior pitcher Carly Hummel threw a complete game as Ole Miss defeated No. 15 Texas A&M 8-4 on Friday night at the Ole Miss Softball Complex.
The win is the Rebels’ second win of the season over a top-15 ranked opponent. Ole Miss opened its conference season with a road victory over then-No. 15 Kentucky on March 8.
“Our kids showed a lot of heart today and came out ready to play,” Ole Miss softball head coach Windy Thees said. “Our kids really want to keep getting better and better and that’s one thing we’ve tried to focus on.”
Cantillo led the way for the Rebels (23-29, 3-19 Southeastern Conference) with a 2-3 performance, including two home runs, three runs scored and another three RBI. Senior Brittany Broome and sophomore Allison Brown also had multi-hit games Friday.
“It was great to see RT finally really get a hold of some things,” Thees said. “She’s been hitting balls hard right at people, but for her to start off the game with that home run and then get another one later on. She’s seeing the ball well and we hope she continues to do so this weekend.”
After giving up a three-run home run in the top of the first, Hummel settled into the game and allowed just one more run on three hits for the remaining six innings. It was Hummel’s 13th complete game of the season.
“Carly has been evolving as an SEC pitcher,” Thees said. “She’s gotten frustrated after giving up a couple runs. We’re in the SEC, the best hitting conference in the country. She has to understand that she’s not the only pitcher in the SEC giving up runs. Today was great because she bounced back and threw up a lot of zeros there.”
Trailing 3-0, Ole Miss responded in the bottom of the first with four runs on four hits. Cantillo began the scoring with a solo home run to left field on the second pitch she saw. Brown scored later in the inning on a throwing error by the Aggies (35-13, 6-12 SEC), and junior catcher Marina Parra then hit a two-RBI single to left field with the bases loaded to give Ole Miss a 4-3 lead.
The Rebels scored two more runs in the bottom of the fourth on a two-run double to the left field wall by junior first baseman Londen Ladner that scored Broome and Cantillo.
Ole Miss took an 8-3 lead in the bottom of the fifth on Cantillo’s second home run of the game, a two-run shot over the left field wall that scored freshman right fielder Bri Payne.
Texas A&M finished out the scoring in the game by scoring one run in the top of the sixth with a lead-off solo home run over the left field wall by catcher Nicole Morgan.
Saturday will be “Kids Take Over the Park” day at the Ole Miss Softball Complex, with kids helping with multiple aspects of running the park during the game. It will also be the final Crawfish Saturday of the season with 100 pounds of free crawfish available to fans in left field.
On Sunday, the Rebels will recognize their three seniors, Broome, Erinn Jayjohn and Kelly Nolan. It will also be Sundae Sunday with free ice cream available while supplies last.
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