UM softball season ends in SEC tourney loss

Ole Miss made its first-ever appearance in the SEC Tournament Thursday, but top-seeded Alabama sent the Rebels home early with a 6-0 loss to the Crimson Tide.

ATHENS, Ga. - In the first Southeastern Conference Tournament appearance in program history, the eighth-seeded Ole Miss softball team was defeated by the top-seeded Alabama Crimson Tide 6-0 on Thursday afternoon at the UGA Softball Complex.

Ole Miss finished the season with a 24-36 overall record, which included winning eight of its last 11 contests. Alabama improved to 49-8 overall and will face fourth-seeded Tennessee in the tournament's second round on Friday.

"When you are doing something for the first time, you expect there to be nerves," said first-year Rebel head coach Missy Dickerson. "I don't want to take anything away from a good Alabama team, but we did not play like we have the past 15 or so games. We made mistakes and gave them some runs. I want the players that are returning next year to remember this and learn from it."

Senior right-hander Dana Brill (12-16) pitched a complete game in her final collegiate contest, allowing six runs (four earned) on 10 Crimson Tide hits, with two strikeouts.

Alabama's Chrissy Owens (19-4) earned the win, tossing six innings and allowing just one Rebel hit, with seven strikeouts. Owens retired the final 18 batters she faced.

Junior right fielder Mary Jane Callahan led off the contest with a bunt single for the Rebels' first-ever postseason base hit, but it would also remain the Rebels' only postseason hit to date.

Alabama was able to crack the scoreboard with a run in the bottom of the first on an RBI single by Staci Ramsey, scoring Brittany Rogers who had led off the frame with a double.

The Crimson Tide added an unearned run in the second when Kelley Montalvo scored on a throwing error by freshman shortstop Lisa Conchos. The Rebels prevented another run when they caught Ashley Holcombe in a run-down between third and home during a double steal attempt.

Another Rebel error allowed one more run to score in the third, giving Alabama a 3-0 lead.

The Rebels were almost out a scoreless inning defensively with two outs in the fifth, but Conchos' attempt at a force out at second base was ruled safe by the umpire, extending the inning and allowing Dominique Accetturo to hit an RBI single and Montalvo a bases-loaded walk, giving Alabama a 5-0 advantage.

Alabama's Rogers, who won the SEC Freshman of the Year announced Wednesday night, led Alabama with a 4-for-4 game and two runs scored.

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