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PHOTO CREDIT: Dakota Williams/UAA Communications

Gator softball on the road against Ole Miss

The Florida Gators are on the road restart conference play this weekend. It’s another Top 25 matchup as they travel to face the Ole Miss Rebels in Oxford.

UF’s first two were against two top ten teams in LSU and Tennessee. Those two series dropped Florida to 2-4 in the conference and the road doesn’t get easier with the 22nd ranked Rebels.

https://twitter.com/GatorsSB/status/1111421505806569472

Jade Caraway on playing Ole Miss coming off a great weekend:

Scouting the Rebels Pitching

Not only is Mississippi the number 22 team in the nation it comes in at the 13 in the latest RPI report.

Florida will face an Ole Miss staff that trails only the Gators and Auburn in team earned run average among conference teams (1.79).

Junior Molly Jacobsen is Ole Miss’s unquestioned ace as she leads the Rebels staff in every major statistic:

  • Wins: 10
  • ERA: 1.04
  • Strikeouts: 76
  • Innings pitched: 74
  • WHIP: .91

Her 1.04 ERA is also the best out of all pitchers in the Southeastern Conference. Her ERA, strikeout and win totals also rank her in the top 10 in the conference.

https://twitter.com/OleMissSoftball/status/1110321249929043968

Ole Miss also doesn’t put a lot of runners on as a team. The Rebels are second in the conference in walks allowed at 42. Although they are in the middle of the pack when it comes to batting average against (.206).

Rebels on Offense

However, Ole Miss doesn’t exactly light it up at the plate. Mike Smith’s squad ranks near or at the bottom in most offensive categories including:

  • Batting average: .290
  • On-base percentage: .369
  • Hits: 214
  • Runs scored: 162
  • Slugging percentage: .465

Pitchers like Kelly Barnhill, Natalie Lugo and Elizabeth Hightower should be able to hold an advantage in the circle.

On the other hand, Mississippi is one of the most aggressive teams on the basepaths. It leads the SEC with 89 steal attempts and is second with 71 stolen bases on the year.

Kylan Becker (18) and Kaylee Horton (14) rank within the top five among conference players. This strategy could prove to be trouble for a Florida team that has 11 stolen bases against and only three caught stealing on the season.

Florida will look to get back on track this weekend. Fans can stream these games on SEC Network+.

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