HAMMOND, La. -- Southeastern Louisiana sophomore designated player Amber Sather hit a game-winning two-run home run in the bottom of the seventh inning to give the Lady Lions a 3-2 win against Mississippi in the nightcap of Monday evening's non-conference doubleheader at North Oak Park. The Redels took the opening game 9-0
With the win, Southeastern improved to 14-18 overall with its fifth victory in its past six games. The visiting Rebels are 20-19 overall after Monday's twin bill.
The win against Ole Miss was the Lady Lions' first versus the Rebels in six meetings. Sather's heroics were set up by a clutch pitching performance by sophomore Taylor Bishop (4-6). She pitched out of jams throughout, stranding 12 base runners in the complete-game victory.
Southeastern showed resilience after losing the opener 9-0 in six innings. The Rebels scored in every inning. Sophomore outfielder Katie Lacour was 2-for-3 in the opener and finished Monday with a nine-game hitting streak.
Game 1 -- Ole Miss 9, Southeastern Louisiana 0 (six Innings)
The Rebels jumped out to an early lead in the top of the first inning versus Lady Lion junior Tori Stamper (4-4). Senior center fielder RT Cantillo led off the game with a single, stole second and scored on two wild pitches to put the Rebels ahead 1-0. An RBI double by sophomore shortstop Haley Culley doubled the Ole Miss advantage in the top of the second inning.
The Rebels added to their lead in the top of the third inning. With two outs, freshman left fielder Miranda Strother powered a home run over the left centerfield fence to give Ole Miss a 3-0 lead.
Southeastern finally mounted a threat in the bottom of the third inning against Ole Miss senior Carly Hummel (9-7). Junior third baseman Megan Moore drew a leadoff walk and a single by Lacour put a pair of runners on with two outs. However, Hummel struck out junior second baseman Vanessa Eng to end the threat.
Ole Miss broke the game open in the top of the fourth inning. A two-run home run by Culley pushed the Rebel lead to 5-0. The Rebels took advantage of errors to score two runs in both the fifth and sixth innings to secure the mercy-rule victory.
Game 2 -- Southeastern Louisiana 3, Ole Miss 2
Ole Miss jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning. An RBI single by junior third baseman Allison Brown gave the Rebels the early lead.
The Lady Lions knotted the score in the bottom of the first inning against Ole Miss sophomore pitcher Madi Osias. Osias walked Lacour, hit senior second baseman Megan McCollum and Sather, then walked freshman outfielder Mychal Truxillo to force in the tying run. Freshman Emily Gaitan (4-5) came in to relieve Osias and pitched out of the bases-loaded, no-out jam, keeping the score tied 1-1.
Bishop and Gaitan both pitched out of jams until Ole Miss finally broke through in the top of the sixth inning. A double by junior designated player Lauren Lindsey and a single by sophomore left fielder Melina Preciado put runners on second and third with no outs. An RBI groundout by senior catcher Marina Parra put the Rebels ahead 2-1. Bishop was able to keep the deficit manageable, stranding five runners in the final two innings.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, Lacour drew a walk to lead off the frame. Lacour was erased when McCollum reached on a fielder's choice. Sather strode to the plate representing the winning run.
After taking a called strike, Sather saw three Gaitan offerings sail well out of the zone. Instead of giving Sather a free pass, Gaitan decided to challenge Sather. Sather responded by drilling a long shot that easily cleared the centerfield fence to give the Lady Lions the dramatic victory.