Ole Miss Prepares for Final SEC Home Series

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

April 23, 2014

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OXFORD, Miss. - The Ole Miss softball team will host its final Southeastern Conference home series of the year this weekend when it welcomes No. 24 LSU to town for a three-game series beginning Friday at the Ole Miss Softball Complex.

The Rebels (22-25, 3-15 SEC) and Tigers will open play Friday at 6 p.m. CT. Game two is scheduled to start Saturday at 2 p.m. CT, and the series concludes Sunday with a 1 p.m. CT first pitch.

"Everybody in the SEC is good," Ole Miss head coach Windy Thees said. "Week in and week out, that's why we play. LSU is a fast team. We match up pretty well against them. We need to not just stay in games like we have all year, but we need to finish games and play 21 outs. If we play 21 outs hard we'll walk away with a win.

"Right now we're working on perfect effort, perfect attitude and being perfect teammates. If we can do those three things, the wins and losses will take care of themselves."

Ole Miss will recognize two of its six seniors prior to each game of the series. RT Cantillo and Shelby Jo Fenter will be recognized Friday, Carly Hummel and Londen Ladner will go Saturday, and Natalie Nimmo and Marina Parra will be honored prior to Sunday's game.

"Senior Weekend is a special weekend," Thees said. "We want to perform well for our seniors, and we want our seniors to perform well, come out and contribute. We also want everybody here for this last home weekend to see some really great softball. That's what we want to put on the field, is a product where our kids are going out there and giving it all they have."

The Rebels and Tigers played once last year in a non-conference game at the Ole Miss Softball Complex. It is the first time the two teams have faced each other in SEC action since 2012, and it's the first time LSU has visited Oxford for an SEC series since 2011.

On Friday, fans will be able to get free titanium necklaces upon entry to the stadium. Saturday will be the Rebels' Breast Cancer Awareness game, with pink bead necklaces and ribbon stickers given out to fans. It will also be Crawfish Saturday, with 100 pounds of crawfish available for fans in the outfield free of charge. Finally, fans can pick up a pair of sunglasses Sunday, and can also find a cure for their sweet tooth with free ice cream sundaes available for fans while supplies last. Admission is free to all Ole Miss softball games.

Cantillo continues to lead Ole Miss at the plate with a team-high .446 batting average that ranks No. 2 in the SEC, and her team-high 58 hits are the sixth most in single-season program history. The Santa Ana, Calif., native was drafted by the Chicago Bandits in the fifth round of the National Pro Fastpitch College Draft on March 31.

Junior third baseman Allison Brown is second on the team in batting average (.350), hits (50), RBIs (28) and runs (27), and leads the team in doubles with 12, which is tied for the sixth most in single-season school history. Brown owns the current record of 17, which she set as a sophomore. Ladner is leading the Rebels in home runs (seven) and RBIs (34).

In the circle, Hummel (10-12) has thrown a team-high 121.1 innings, has struck out a team-high 110 batters and holds a team-best ERA of 3.17.

LSU, which plays No. 20 South Alabama on Wednesday night in Baton Rouge, La., has been led offensively by junior outfielder A.J. Andrews, who has a team-high batting average of .333 and 30 runs scored, and freshman catcher/infielder Sahvanna Jaquish, who has a team-high 10 home runs and 34 RBIs.

The LSU pitching staff has been led primarily by freshman Baylee Corbello and senior Ashley Czechner. Corbello has a team-best ERA of 2.93, a team-high 141.0 innings pitched and 142 strikeouts. Czechner has thrown 121.0 innings with a 3.82 ERA and 86 strikeouts.

For all Ole Miss softball news and information, including live stats and a recap of each game of the LSU series, go to OleMissSports.com and follow the Rebels on Twitter at @OleMissSoftball and on Facebook at Ole Miss Softball.

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