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Kendra Falby. Photo courtesy of Arnav Barpujari.

A Walsh Walk-Off Gives Gator Softball Team Win Over Ole Miss

The Florida Gator softball team outscored the Ole Miss Rebels 6-5 in walk-off fashion Friday night at Katie Seashole Pressly Stadium. It wasn’t until the bottom of the seventh inning that Reagan Walsh secured the win for her team with a bomb over the left field fence.

How It Started

The Gators started the game off strong. Charla Echols came up clutch in the first inning with a two-run homer. Echols scored Kendra Falby, who singled prior. Florida’s defense took the momentum with them to retire the first three Rebels up to bat in the second inning as Lexie Brady, Jaila Lassiter and Mya Stevenson all were put out.

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Ole Miss put one across in the third inning. Senior Paige Smith contributed with a sacrifice bunt to score Tate Whitley, who reached on an error earlier in the inning. The fourth inning went in the Rebels favor, too. Pinch hitter Brooke Banard doubled off of Gator pitcher Elizabeth Hightower to score Brady and tie the game at 2-2.  After that, freshman Jaila Lassiter scored off of a wild pitch from Florida relief pitcher Rylee Trlicek and the Rebels led 3-2.

How It Ended

Ole Miss put up two more in the fifth inning. Smith hit a solo shot to left, increasing the Gators deficit and making it 4-2. Later that inning, a first and third play by Florida’s defense allowed another run to score. Brady was on first base while Keila Kamoku was on third. When Brady went to steal second, Florida catcher Sarah Longley threw her out. Unfortunately the throw back home wasn’t in time and Kamoku scored to make it 5-2 Rebels.

The competition stayed at 5-2 until the bottom of the seventh. Charla Echols singled to score Skylar Wallace to make it a 5-3 game.  Falby then walked, which set up the game winning blast by Walsh by that 6-5 score.

Walsh and Echols both had excellent performances. Echols notched her 10th home run of the year and her team leading 56th RBI on the year. Walsh crushed her seventh home run of the season to go along with her 12th multi-RBI game of the year. Both players admit that an early lead will help the team moving forward, but they’re confident in their team to continue playing Gator softball like they know how to do.

The Gators will take on the Rebels again on Saturday at noon in hopes of taking the series at home.

About Lauren Halpern

I'm an undergraduate student in the College of Journalism and Communications working towards a Bachelor of Science in Journalism. With a specialization in sports and media, my involvement in ESPN Gainesville, Reptile Report, and The University Athletic Association has given me good introductory experience in the sports media industry. I'm seeking a sports broadcasting position as a reporter where my high energy personality and passion for athletics is communicated to the public. As an athlete myself, it's important to me to work on a supportive and hard-working team. I look forward to connecting with you!

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