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April 22, 2005

COLUMBIA, S.C. – It is coming down to the wire for South Carolina softball as the Gamecocks are in a must win situation in order to claim a berth to the 2005 SEC Tournament. USC (24-24-1, 7-14 SEC) is down to their final two conference series and will conclude its road schedule this weekend as they travel to Oxford, Miss. to take on the Ole Miss Rebels (25-23, 5-15 SEC). Saturday’s doubleheader is scheduled for 5 p.m. (ET) and the series will conclude Sunday at 1 p.m. (ET).

The Gamecocks currently hold the No. 8 seed in the tournament and need to win their final two series against the Rebels and the Mississippi State Bulldogs (May 7-8) to clinch a spot in the tournament. The Rebels are ninth currently and a series win against the Gamecocks could push them into the top eight.

For the series, South Carolina leads the Rebels 14-4 and last year in Columbia, Ole Miss took their first series win ever against USC with a 2-1 win. In 2003, USC’s last visit to Oxford, the Gamecocks won 2-1 with a 6-2 and 1-0 doubleheader sweep.

Ole Miss recorded its five SEC wins against Kentucky, Auburn, Alabama, and Mississippi State while USC’s seven SEC wins came against Arkansas, Kentucky, and LSU.

In SEC play, Mary Jane Callahan leads the Rebels at the plate with a .345 batting average. Callahan has 20 hits and has scored a team leading eight runs. Lauren Rowe leads the team in RBI with seven and has a .231 average. As a team, Ole Miss is hitting .209 and has an ERA of 2.33. Dana Brill has a 3-3 record with a 2.80 ERA while Callahan is 2-8 with a 1.82 record.

The Gamecocks are hitting .225 in SEC play while Meghan Cornett leads with 23 hits and a .390 batting average. Cornett also ranks seventh in batting average in the conference so far this season. Ashley Smith has a team leading 13 RBI while Lisa Longo leads in runs scored with 11. The Gamecocks’ pitching staff has an ERA of 4.46 and is looking for their first SEC win since April 3 against Kentucky. USC has lost nine consecutive conference games.

All games can be followed on the Internet at via Gametracker live stats or audio broadcast with Lane Wofford