FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – In a game that saw three lead changes, two ties and one extra inning, the University of Arkansas softball team came out on the losing end, falling 6-4 in eight innings to Ole Miss Saturday afternoon at Bogle Park. Playing in their fifth extra innings game this season, and third at home, Arkansas had the potential tying run on second base with two outs in the eighth, but was unable to capitalize.
The Razorbacks (14-19, 0-8 SEC) and Rebels (20-13, 4-7 SEC) will play game three Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m., with the game being broadcasted on SEC Network+.
Ole Miss got on the board in the first inning after Natalie Martinez connected for a solo home run to left.
Arkansas found its way onto the scoreboard in the bottom of the second, thanks to a Parker Pocklington sacrifice fly. Shelby Hiers and Loren Krzysko both singled to lead off the inning and with one out, Madison Yannetti walked to load up the bases. Pocklington’s sixth RBI of the season on the fly to right field knotted up the game at 1-1.
Sydney Wright, starting for the second time in as many days, settled into a groove in the early innings, retiring eight straight Rebel batters at one point between the end of the first and beginning of the fourth. Wright (9-9) matched her career-high in innings pitched, throwing the game’s entire eight innings and taking the loss after giving up six earned runs while striking out three.
Ole Miss grabbed a 2-1 lead in the top of the fifth following a leadoff single, a sacrifice hit and then an RBI base knock.
In the home half of the fifth, Arkansas countered back with two runs and nabbed a 3-2 lead. Devon Wallace led off the inning reaching on a base on balls and Kasey Fagan singled to center, with both advancing into scoring position on an error by the centerfielder. Stephanie Canfield reached on an error by the second baseman in the next at-bat, which scored both Wallace and Fagan.
The Rebels came back to tie the game in the sixth, scoring the tying run on a double down the left-field line.
Tied at 3-3 in the bottom of the seventh, Tori Cooper started off the rally by singling to center. Wallace walked, setting up first and second with no outs. After grounding into a fielder’s choice that cut down the lead runner at third, Arkansas still had first and second with no outs. The Razorbacks squandered the threat after flying out to left and grounding into a fielder’s choice at second to end the inning.
In the eighth inning, Ole Miss had runners at first and second with two outs. The Rebels took the lead 6-3 after Haley Cully’s hit to right avoided the fielder and wound up a three-run inside-the-park home run.
Krzysko started up the rally in the bottom of the eight with a leadoff walk. Yannetti and pinch-hitter Jessica Harrison used back-to-back one-out singles to load up the bases. Cooper’s sacrifice fly to deep center plated Krzysko and trimmed the lead to 6-4. The bases got jammed up again after Wallace’s walk, but a fly out to left field ended the game with the tying run on second.
• Arkansas falls to 2-3 in extra innings games this season.
• Redshirt freshman Loren Krzysko continues her groove at the plate, collecting her fifth hit in the last five games on Saturday. During this recent five-game stretch, Krzysko is batting .385 with five RBIs.
• Freshman Tori Cooper, earning her eighth career start, has hit safely in each of the last three games. Overall, she is batting .455 in the team’s last four games.
• Sophomore Sydney Wright matched her career high, pitching eight innings.