The 14th-ranked Georgia Bulldogs concluded the regular season Sunday with two victories over the #15 Ole Miss Rebels. The Bulldogs walked-off in game one by a score of 6-5 then followed with an 8-0 run rule in the finale, securing the sweep.
In game two, the Bulldogs recorded their 18th shutout of the season to clinch the first SEC series sweep of the 2019 campaign. The two wins extend Georgia’s win streak to five games, the longest streak of the conference season. The Bulldogs have also now won eight of their last ten games.
Junior Alysen Febrey had four hits on the day, including a three-RBI home run in game two. Junior Mahlena O’Neal and Freshman Lacey Fincher each added in three hits in the doubleheader as well.
Pitchers Mary Wilson Avant, Lauren Mathis, and Alley Cutting all did not allow a single earned run Sunday.
Georgia 6, Ole Miss 5
Mathis (8-4) earned the win in relief in game one, pitching the final inning and a third. Avant worked the middle four and two-thirds innings, striking out two.
O’Neal concluded the contest going 3-for-4 with three runs driven in. Febrey and Fincher also recorded multiple hits, picking up two each.
The second game of the series began Saturday afternoon but was suspended in the bottom of the first with Ole Miss up 1-0. The game was resumed Sunday morning.
Avant replaced Cutting to start the second inning. Despite both teams having a runner in scoring position, the score remained 1-0 Ole Miss after two innings.
Avant continued to pitch well in the third inning as she shut down the Rebels offense for a 1-2-3 inning. The Bulldog offense finally broke through in the bottom of the third inning. Singles with the bases loaded by O’Neal and Justice Milz gave the Bulldogs a 3-1 lead heading into the fourth inning.
After two more scoreless innings, the Bulldogs took their 3-1 lead into the top of the sixth inning. Two two-out Bulldog errors in the top of the sixth allowed Ole Miss to push four unearned runs across the plate and put the Rebels ahead 5-3.
The game was sent into the bottom of the seventh inning with Georgia trailing by two runs. With one out, Alyssa DiCarlo walked followed by back-to-back base hits by Febrey and Fincher to load the bases. O’Neal plated the tying runs with a single back up the middle. After a pop out, Savana Sikes delivered the walk-off hit into center, plating Fincher and securing Georgia’s fifth SEC series win, 6-5.
Georgia 8, Ole Miss 0 (5 inn.)
In the second game, Febrey earned two more hits with three RBI.
Cutting pitched the complete five innings in her shutout. She struck out two and allowed only three hits.
In the bottom of the opening frame, an RBI single from Fincher and a two-RBI double from Sikes helped propel the Bulldogs to the early 4-0 lead.
Following a 1-2-3 top of the second inning from Cutting, the Bulldog offense continued its early success with a three-run home run by Febrey to take a 7-0 lead. However, the early offensive onslaught continued with an RBI base hit from Milz to extend the lead to 8-0.
As the game progressed, Cutting continued her strong performance in the circle, holding Ole Miss scoreless through four innings. Ole Miss got a runner on base in the bottom of the fifth but Cutting and the Bulldogs stranded the runner there, securing the five-inning victory and the sweep of the Rebels.
Georgia will now set its sights on the SEC Tournament this week in College Station, Texas. Georgia will open tournament play Wednesday. Seedings and game times will be announced Sunday evening.
Head Coach Lu Harris-Champer
On playing two games today…
“The most import thing was to focus on us. Having the two seniors we have it was not hard to get the team pumped up. All they wanted to do was come out here and play hard for Kylie and Alyssa.”
On Savana Sikes…
“She is a ballplayer. She loves playing the game, she is very smart when it comes to playing the game. I’m really proud of how clutch she is.”
On the crowd…
“The crowd was amazing. It was so exciting to see that many people out here to support our seniors. I love the crowd and how much they fought for us today.”
“Her mindset is really strong. She is feeling the pitch and reading the pitch and expecting the ball.”