Ole Miss hands No. 2 LSU first loss of the season

Courtesy of Ole Miss Athletics

Sydney Berszon and the second-ranked Tigers were on cruise control. The sophomore ace had retired 17 straight batters. Then Jalia Lassiter, the only Ole Miss batter with a hit all the way back in the first, stepped up to the plate. She doubled and ended Berzon’s streak. She also ignited Ole Miss’ offense and they ended No. 2 LSU’s win streak. The Rebels went on to score five runs in the final two innings to be the first team to beat the Tigers this season in a 5-2 win.

Following Lassiter’s double, Jaden Pone perfectly bounced a ball over Taylor Pleasants head to score the first run as Lassiter barely beat the throw home from Ciara Briggs. Lexie Brady drove a very long single off the right-field wall to tie the game.

The freshman Sierra Daniel had her struggles at third base. She has done a good job filling in for the injured Danieca Coffey but these moments happen in pressure situations. Jamie Mackay singled to open the seventh as Daniel couldn’t happen a tough hop. Then Daniel committed an error. Then a ball rolled down the line and Daniel didn’t have a plan, but she turned and tossed to Plesants covering third. That ticked off her glove and the go-ahead run scored. Jalia Lassiter sent a single back up the middle to add a pair of insurance runs.

The LSU offense had its chances against Makenna Kliethermes. However, she did well to work around seven hits and three walks. The Tigers went 2-for-11 with runners on base and brought the tying run to the plate in the seventh. Now there are no more undefeated teams in Division I softball.

LSU will be fine. The Tigers probably weren’t going undefeated this season and have toed a thin line with a handful of walk-off wins. Beth Torina likely is glad that Daniel, who projects to be in the lineup for the rest of the year, had these mistakes on a Sunday in March and not in May or June. Ole Miss picks up a big win for its resume that needs bolstering. The rubber match will be at 7 p.m. ET on SEC Network.

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